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‘We deserved these points’ says Tsunoda after sealing first top-10 finish in Monaco

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MONTE-CARLO, MONACO - MAY 26: 8th placed Yuki Tsunoda of Japan and Visa Cash App RB celebrates in

Yuki Tsunoda was thrilled to score his very first points at Monaco on Sunday – a result he says shows his growing consistency as he looks to cement his future on the F1 grid.

After lining up in P8 at the start, Tsunoda managed his pace throughout the event to preserve his tyres and crossed the line in the same position. While the Japanese driver felt some frustration at not being able to push, he kept his cool and came away happy with his final result.

READ MORE: Leclerc clinches long-awaited home win in Monaco ahead of Piastri and Sainz after early drama

“[It’s] good that we scored points again," said Tsunoda after the race. “I think we deserved these points. It was kind of fine-tuning, a bit of balance between me and my strategy. Obviously myself I wanted to push, but as a strategy we didn’t want to.

“[I] kind of tried to be calm as much as possible. In the end, the last couple of laps I enjoyed it and [it’s my] first points in Monaco, so definitely a happy day.”

Tsunoda has yet to finalise his plans for 2025, with RB amongst the teams still to decide on their driver line-up. As such, the 24-year-old was asked how important his consistency is – having scored points on five race weekends so far – in showing the paddock that he wants to remain in the sport next year.

‘We deserve these points’ – Tsunoda thrilled with first Monaco top 10 finish

“Yeah, definitely,” Tsunoda responded. “It’s very important that we keep scoring points, and I think also the team allows me to bring the confidence straight away in FP1 and having a good pace already from maybe [practice] one.

“I think those kind of things will obviously help me to be confident and focused on what I have to do. I think just every race we are super consistent, that’s what we all want and we just keep pushing at what we’re doing.”

READ MORE: Tsunoda assesses future F1 options as long-time backers Honda get set for Aston Martin tie-up

On the other side of the garage, Daniel Ricciardo lost out to the Aston Martin duo of Fernando Alonso and Lance Stroll early in the race and spent much of the Grand Prix following behind them, eventually ending the day in his original starting position of P12.

“It’s hard – if you don’t qualify in the points it’s definitely hard to make it happen,” the Australian conceded. “I think the first start, it was one of our few very good starts this year, but actually it kind of put me in a position I didn’t really want to be!

“I had quite a lot of momentum, and there was a little bit of space I think behind [Pierre] Gasly and I went a bit to the left, and obviously it narrows in at Turn 1 so I had to come out of it, then that allowed Stroll to carry more momentum on the inside, so he got me on the first one.

Ricciardo looking ahead to Canada after ‘not the Monaco I wanted’

“Then the second one, from memory he just came across, protected the inside as there was [Esteban] Ocon not there [following his retirement during the red flag], so his start was a little bit better, [he] came across and then I think that allowed Alonso some room on the outside.

“I looked at both Astons for really the whole race, but that’s no surprise, that’s how it is around here. I had two laps the whole race in clear air where I could push a little bit – they were enjoyable.

“The rest… there was a few with Alonso trying to create something so that was a little bit of fun, but not 70-something laps, that was a little bit painful.

HIGHLIGHTS: Relive all the race action as Leclerc wins at home following a chaotic start in Monaco

“Not the Monaco I wanted for sure, but going to pick myself up and get back on it. Montreal’s a good track, I enjoy it, so [I’ll] try and get this thing going a little better than it has.”

While he is already looking ahead to the upcoming Canadian Grand Prix – a race in which he claimed his first F1 victory 10 years ago – Ricciardo admitted that he also feels frustrated by his lack of consistency in comparison to his team mate.

“I think there’s a lot of positives with [seeing the team score points with Tsunoda], but there’s also personal frustration and disappointment, because it obviously can be done and Yuki’s got points the last few races,” the 34-year-old added.

“I think that’s where I’m just going to pick myself up and find what it is that I’m not quite showing consistently. I feel like, when I do show it, it’s obviously there. But, yeah, obviously [it] has to come every weekend, otherwise that’s no good, so Montreal we’ll try and pick it up.”

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