Yuki Tsunoda accused of acting guilty amid cheating conspiracy

Yuki Tsunoda caused an influential Safety Car with his retirement in the Netherlands on Sunday.

Fans on social media reckon that Yuki Tsunoda looked on edge as he fielded questions about his retirement after the 2022 Dutch Grand Prix.

Tsunoda had started in the top 10, but later plummeted down the order after he stopped immediately following a pit stop.

The young Japanese driver told his AlphaTauri team that he felt as though one of the wheels was loose, but he was then told to continue back round to the pits, as the engineers could not see anything wrong with the car.

Tsunoda had begun to undo his safety harness while he was stationary the first time, so his mechanics needed to take time to fasten him back into the car before sending him back out when he pitted again.

READ: Toto Wolff wants FIA to ‘closely look at’ Red Bull cheating conspiracy

However, it turned out that there was a fundamental problem with the car, so he stopped once more, causing a Virtual Safety Car.

On a two-stop strategy, Max Verstappen needed to pit again out front, and his second stop would have put him behind Sir Lewis Hamilton and George Russell.

The Ferrari of Charles Leclerc had already made his second stop, so all three of the leaders got a cheap stop to re-join ahead of Leclerc, while Verstappen was able to clear the Mercedes duo with his stop.

This got fans thinking that there was some kind of conspiracy between Red Bull and AlphaTauri, who are the junior team to the Austrian outfit.

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After the race, Tsunoda explained why he stopped, continued back to the pits, and then stopped again.

“I thought there was an issue,” he told Sky Sports.

“And the engineers didn’t see [anything] in the data, so I came back again, we fitted a different set of tyres, and after that pit stop, the engineers saw the issue in the data, that’s why we stopped.”

READ: Red Bull accused of ‘blatant cheating’, FIA investigating after the race

The 22-year-old confirmed that the tyres were “not the issue,” and stated that the nature of the problem was such that it made him think the tyre was loose.

Some Twitter detectives reckon they saw something in Tsunoda’s body language that suggests he knows there was a conspiracy.

Others though, pointed to the fact that English is not AlphaTauri driver’s first language, so constructing flowing sentences, having learned the language while travelling in Europe, does not come so naturally.