Young Japanese debutant Yuki Tsunoda is thrilled with his first day in the new F1 season in which he set the seventh fastest time of the first day and is looking forward to showing his full potential in qualifying. Tsunoda had a stunning rise through the junior categories and after just one season in Formula 2 2020, in which he finished third in the drivers ’standings, he gets a chance in Formula 1 in the AlphaTauri team.
The Japanese delighted in the pre-season tests with his driving style and the second-fastest time, and on the first day of the new season, he continued in the same rhythm and showed speed and maturity behind the wheel of the AlphaTauri AT02.
“It was a great day, I experienced my first free practice as an F1 driver and it was really exciting,” Tsunoda said. "I think my passion really shone today and I'm looking forward to showing my full potential behind the wheel in qualifying."
"We have great speed this weekend and I'm looking forward to seeing what kind of performance I will have in my first qualifiers." "I'm still learning about the car and it's only my first race weekend so I don't want to put too much pressure on myself, but I'm looking forward to going out on the track and doing the first race and seeing what we can do."
Gasly on his race
Pierre Gasly is entering his fourth full season in Formula 1 and wants to impose himself as a team leader alongside young Tsunoda to earn a chance to return to the main Red Bull team. “It was a good start to the weekend, the car seemed good at both training sessions and I’m happy with that,” Gasly said.
"I didn't manage to put everything together properly in the fast lap, but there are generally a lot of positive things after today." "We showed good speed on longer distances, but it's only the first day so we don't need to get too excited."
"I hope we can get through to Q3 in qualifying, that's our goal, and if we do that then we should be in a position to fight for good points on race day." For now, the rides of both drivers, Tsunoda and Gasly, look promising.
Maybe just one of them could be the surprise of the season, and it will be especially interesting if Tsunoda makes a success as a debutant. This season promises a lot!