Yuki Tsunoda ‘in a bit of trouble’ with Daniel Ricciardo arrival, pundit claims

Sam Cooper
AlphaTauri's Daniel Ricciardo and Yuki Tsunoda.

McLaren mechanic turned pundit Marc Priestley has predicted Yuki Tsunoda could be “in a bit of trouble” following Daniel Ricciardo’s arrival into the team.

While Ricciardo’s arrival back into the Red Bull family was predicted as a warning sign for Sergio Perez, it is Tsunoda who has been first to feel the heat.

Ricciardo was dropped in to replace underwhelming driver Nyck de Vries following the British Grand Prix and although the Australian has yet to score points, he has appeared to get up to speed quickly.

Yuki Tsunoda warned about Daniel Ricciardo’s quick adjustment

Ricciardo’s first race back appeared over almost as soon as it began with him being the unfortunate filling in a Zhou Guanyu – Alpine sandwich but a smart one-stop strategy and some good driving from Ricciardo pushed him to a 13th-place finish.

In Spa, he dropped to 16th but right now it looks as if he has a good chance to add to his 1311 career point tally in the second half of the year.

Priestley has warned Tsunoda that Ricciardo’s quick adjustment to life at AlphaTauri could put him in “a bit of trouble.”

“I actually personally think that he’s in a bit of trouble here,” the former McLaren mechanic told the BBC’s Chequered Flag podcast. “Because I think Daniel Ricciardo is actually very, very strong already in that car.

“The only reason Daniel Ricciardo was languishing at the back [in Belgium] was that moment in qualifying where he stepped over track limits and lost his lap time.

“Clearly, that’s his own fault, that was a mistake, but it put him on the back foot and he didn’t manage to get through that train of cars.

“I think you put the two of them next to each other on a clear bit of track in the same car, I think Daniel Ricciardo is showing signs of winning every time and that’s got to be a worry for Tsunoda.

“You know how brutal that Red Bull family can be if you’re not living up to expectations so that’s one to keep an eye on in the second half of the season.”

Former Williams driver Jack Aitken on the other hand suggested Tsunoda’s performance in Belgium had seen him “claw back” some momentum.

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“He really put in a strong performance and by contrast, Daniel Ricciardo had a pretty torrid race, not entirely through his own fault,” the

“Daniel’s come in and instantly hit the ground running. He had a really solid first performance and you could almost see that the team were gravitating around him already as a more experienced driver, the guy that’s been there done it before. There were question marks over Yuki for a while now with his future within the Red Bull franchise, let’s say between them and AlphaTauri.

“It was all going the wrong way for Yuki before this race and he’s clawed a bit of that back now.”

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