Yuki Tsunoda speaks out on Sergio Perez’s deal in George Russell comparison – EXCLUSIVE

Sergio Perez extends contract with Red Bull Racing until 2024

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Yuki Tsunoda has claimed he is unaffected by Sergio Perez’s new deal despite the new contract stopping him from progressing to Red Bull until at least 2025. Perez was rewarded with a new two-year extension ahead of the Monaco Grand Prix meaning both Red Bull seats are now filled until the end of the 2024 campaign.

It’s bad news for the pool of Red Bull junior drivers who are expected to naturally progress into the top team. However, 22-year-old Tsunoda claimed it was ‘not a bad thing to be in the midfield’ as he aimed to draw comparisons with George Russell.

When asked whether he had eyes on a Red Bull drive from 2025, the Japanese star stressed he was happy at Alpha Tauri and claimed his only focus was on scoring results for the team. Speaking to Express Sport, he said: “It’s not a bad thing to be in the midfield team. Because I can learn, a good example was George Russell.

“He was in Williams quite a long time and he was able to perform straight away when he jumped to Mercedes. I think I can learn a lot of things still, for example to maximise the performance as much as possible, even when the car is not having the potential to score points.

“I think those things are going to be really important especially when you step up to the top team and they ask the driver to consistently get in the top three or help the team to always be in the top position in the championship. I think the most important thing is right now I am happy working with Scuderia Alpha Tauri.”

He added: “I’m just carrying on focusing right now and do what I have to do, score points as much as possible. Then we will see after that.”

Team-mate Pierre Gasly has also been dealt a blow by Perez’s new extension.

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The Frenchman’s Red Bull deal expires at the end of 2023, meaning it is now unlikely he will get another chance at the top team. He admitted he was ‘ready to leave’ Red Bull and was looking at options with other teams.

He said: “My contract is valid until 2023 and after that I am ready to consider any options. With the support of Red Bull, I’m ready to drive in another team, as Alex Albon is now in Williams. I’m ready to leave the Red Bull program, but I don’t want to go into details. I don’t want to make headlines.”

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