Helmut Marko criticises Yuki Tsunoda for going ‘too far’

Yuki Tsunoda has become somewhat renowned for his expletive-filled team radio messages

Helmut Marko says that Yuki Tsunoda’s radio outbursts “went too far,” affecting the AlphaTauri driver’s performances.

Tsunoda became renowned for his expletive-filled team radio messages in his rookie season in Formula 1.

On multiple occasions, something would anger the Japanese driver and he’d make his feelings clear on the radio, launching into a tirade of swear words.

While most spectators found it amusing, Marko and AlphaTauri didn’t, with the Austrian saying that such behaviour began to make Tsunoda slower and wasn’t what the team needed from him.

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“At some point, his outbursts of rage on the radio went too far,” Marko told Motorsport-Total.

“He learned how to swear in English from Carlin. But if you swear and curse in the middle of a corner, that’s not good. Then you drive slower. We explained to him that he has to stop it. 

“In addition, the engineers can’t do anything with feedback like ‘bloody f*cking car’. We have to know exactly what the car is doing. He has to analyse that and then say things factually.”

It was a difficult first season on the grid for Tsunoda on the whole with the 22-year-old making multiple errors and being comfortably outperformed by team-mate Pierre Gasly, scoring 78 points less than the Frenchman.

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Things have been much better for him in 2022 though with him just five points behind Gasly heading into the second half of the season.

Marko still very much has faith that the young driver can go on to win races, not being overly concerned by his radio antics.

“Tsunoda is not the only driver who has problems in this area. That’s nothing reprehensible either,” he added.

“Yuki has a certain cult status with us. He has the potential to win grands prix. And that is what we aspire to in the junior programme.”

That being said, he’s less certain that Tsunoda can become a World Champion in F1, feeling that he needs to improve his attitude and become more of a team player if he wishes to do so.

“As far as becoming world champion, so much has to come together,” said Marko.

“There has to be a step more from the driver in terms of his overall personality because in a critical situation, the driver can raise the whole team up or pull them along or bring them down.”

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Gasly is very much the leader at AlphaTauri at the moment but how much longer that will be the case is unclear.

While he’s contracted to drive for the team next season, Marko has suggested he’ll be free to leave the Red Bull family after that, and with reported interest from the likes of Alpine and McLaren, he’ll most likely do so.

The Austrian seemingly isn’t too worried about that, saying that Tsunoda is already just as fast as his team-mate.