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Tsunoda on good relationship with Marko: 'Without him I would never have been an F1 driver'

Tsunoda on good relationship with Marko: 'Without him I would never have been an F1 driver'

24-09-2022 14:32 Last update: 25-09-2022 03:52


Yuki Tsunoda speaks candidly about his relationship with Helmut Marko. The Red Bull Racing advisor has been an important person in the Japaneseman's career, he indicates. He is also hugely looking forward to his home race in Japan.

Speaking to Motorsport-Total the Japanese is reminded that Marko regularly affectionately calls him 'Yuki, our little Japanese'. Asked if that bothers him, he replies, "I see him as a friend and mentor and not just as my boss. 50% of the time we talk about other things outside the track, 50% about racing." Tsunoda says he gets on well with Marko and he has been looking after him for a long time since he was a junior racer. "That is why I am a Formula One driver now. Without him, I would never have become one."

Few interested Japanese

First, Formula 1 still stops in Singapore, but then the circus returns to Suzuka after a few years' absence from the calendar due to the corona virus. Tsunoda is hugely looking forward to it, although he does not expect a big reception. "To be honest, I think I am more famous in Italy than in Japan. Formula 1 is a big deal in Japan, that's true. But not nearly as big as when Ayrton Sennawas still driving. " This, according to Tsunoda, is mainly because for a long time there was no Japanese Formula One driver and there was also no Japanese manufacturer causing any interest to drop. He hopes to do something to get many fans from Japan interested in Formula 1.

Tsunoda can't wait

Tsunoda's lack of knowledge about the sport's popularity in the country is partly also due to the fact that he has not been there for a long time and finds it difficult to gauge how popular Formula 1 is there at the moment. The Japanese is in his homeland three weeks a year and the last time he was there he was forced into quarantine. "I do look forward to Japan. I heard the tickets sold out early. That's great. I can't wait to race in front of the Japanese fans!"

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