Tsunoda determined to learn from ‘really tough’ first wet race after crash and spin in Imola
From star of the opening round in Bahrain to an error-strewn second outing at Imola, Yuki Tsunoda says he sees the past weekend as a big learning experience in his rookie season.
The AlphaTauri driver impressed in the first ever F1 race, climbing through the field after a tentative start to score points in ninth with a number of strong overtaking moves. However, after looking quick again in practice at Imola, he crashed at the start of Q1 and heavily damaged his car, starting the race from the back of the grid.
Rain on Sunday opened up opportunities that saw Tsunoda restart the race in the top 10 after a red flag period, but he instantly spun at the Tamburello chicane and then compounded his afternoon with a time penalty for exceeding track limits that left him 12th at the flag, once Kimi Raikkonen had been demoted with a post-race penalty.
“I think until the red flag was pretty good,” Tsunoda said. “After it I had a snap on acceleration, I think I was just too aggressive on the throttle and had a spin at Turn 2. After that the pace was pretty good I think, it was just a real shame that I spun on the first lap and couldn’t get the points.
"I feel sorry again for the team. Overall this weekend was really tough for me, I think I need to just learn from it and do better next time.
“It was definitely possible to get some points this time. This is a learning curve, so I need to not do it next time and just do a better race weekend in Portimao.”
Despite the frustration of missing out on a potential top 10 result at AlphaTauri’s home race, one of the areas Tsunoda can mark down as productive is the fact he got to gain experience in the wet in just his second Grand Prix.
“This was the first time I’ve been in a Formula 1 car in the wet and I learnt you have to be so careful, especially with acceleration.
"Starting on the intermediate tyre during the rainy conditions made it even more difficult but it was a great opportunity for me to understand more how the compounds work in different conditions.”