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Yuki Tsunoda

Tsunoda: Dutch GP 'disadvantage' surprised AlphaTauri

The Japanese racer looked set for a big points finish before tumbling down the order late on at Zandvoort.

Tsunoda Zandvoort Sunday
Article
To news overview © Red Bull Content Pool

AlphaTauri was left surprised by the scale of the disadvantage in staying out on old Soft Pirelli tyres in the Dutch Grand Prix, according to Yuki Tsunoda.

Tsunoda was among the drivers to pit at the end of the first lap for a switch to Intermediate tyres, vaulting up the order after dropping to 17th following a grid penalty for impeding Lewis Hamilton in qualifying.

As the change back to slick tyres happened, AlphaTauri bolted on a set of Soft tyres onto Tsunoda's car, with a big haul of points on the cards.

However, as the tyres degraded, Tsunoda's pace fell evaporated and was soon reeled in.

The Japanese driver eventually finished a penalised 15th after being handed a five-second penalty for a collision with George Russell, and expressed how the team misjudged the tyre drop-off.

AlphaTauri misses out on points

"The strategy that we took, staying out with the Soft tyre was a [decision] that we were all agreed on, including me," Tsunoda told media including RacingNews365.

"In free practice, the Soft looked good and we didn't expect that much of a disadvantage between new and used tyres.

"It was quite a lot more than we expected. It didn't come off, but I still enjoyed battling with the other drivers."

Tsunoda also thanked the team for respecting his call to come into the pits for Intermediates at the end of the first lap, despite it telling him to stay out.

"The team was saying: 'stay out' but I was like: 'no, just come in' because with all the rain, we would have struggled for grip.

"I am happy with the strategy we took and am happy with the team for respecting my call."

F1 2023 Dutch Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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