Yuki Tsunoda has responded to remarks from Red Bull team advisor Helmut Marko suggesting that the Japanese driver was a “problem child” who’d been recently been compelled to seek professional help by saying that he has been working with psychologists for a number of years, and credited them with helping him to reach F1 in the first place.
Marko made the comment on Servus TV this week, calling Tsunoda the “problem child” of the Red Bull setup for the way he sometimes loses his cool, following his clash with teammate Pierre Gasly at Silverstone.
However, while Marko suggested that Tsunoda’s work with a psychologist was a new development, the Japanese driver explained he has actually started using one before he reached F1.
“I was already working with the other psychologist/trainer from Formula 2,” Tsunoda said. “I was really happy working with him and also he was part of the reason (I was) able to step up to Formula 1. He was able to help me to develop my performance in Formula 2, my consistency.
“I will say they hired a new psychologist/trainer from four races ago. I don’t know (if) currently it’s working well or not. If it’s working well I think maybe I didn’t have the crash, but I have to take a bit more time because he has to understand more about myself, and also we have to understand what direction we have to take.
“But I think definitely one of the limitations is that I start to get quite overheated… especially my brain, in the car. I know that I have to improve myself, those parts, to have more consistency. So hopefully the new trainer will work well and we can work well for the future.”
Reflecting on the contact with Gasly in the British Grand Prix, Tsunoda took full responsibility for the incident and apologized both to AlphaTauri and his teammate.
“We had our contact, fully my fault,” he said. “I apologized to the team straight away. And especially to Pierre. Of course the team are disappointed, especially because we were fighting for the points. And also, we expected it was going to be difficult race weekend in Silverstone but we were running in the points, so we lost them. I couldn’t say anything more than ‘sorry.’”