“Our strength is my engineering group” — Tsunoda credits his RB F1 engineers for strong start to 2024 season

Photo Credit: Red Bull Content Pool
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Ahead of the 2024 Formula One Spanish Grand Prix, Yuki Tsunoda was asked about his expectations from the car in the racing weeks ahead. F1 travels to Spain, Austria, Britain, Hungary and Belgium before the summer break.

Tsunoda went on to explain that they are planning to run their car in quite a stiff way over the coming races on permanent circuits, and how that might impact RB F1’s performance in the coming triple-header.

“I was discussing with Laurent actually, you know, last two races were a pretty soft car and the next three races are going to be a pretty stiff car.”

Tsunoda is assured that the car will perform well, as it has in the past when they tend to run the car stiff.

“So, that will for sure affect something. But, I mean, still we experienced a stiff track, you know. It turns out we normally go to a pretty stiff track and still performing well. So, we don’t have much concern with that.”

The RB F1 driver claimed they are curious to see how VCARB 01 will perform on more aerodynamically efficient tracks, such as the one in Spain.

“I think we’re excited to see a more aero efficiency track. So, if we perform here, which means our aerodynamics is good. So, we’re feeling confident.”

Tsunoda has had a consistently strong campaign compared with his teammate Daniel Ricciardo to date. He has brought in 19 points out the team’s total of 28 in the season so far.

When asked where he thinks the difference lies, Tsunoda says he has a strong engineering group, and they are able to things around if the weekend starts slowly, as was the case on Fridays early on in 2024.

The RB F1 driver also emphasised the importance of communication on his side of the garage.

“I don’t know for him [Ricciardo], but for myself, kind of our strength is my engineering group and everything.

“I know how that works and each person’s characteristics. But even [when] we had a bad start in FP1, FP2, kind of Montreal was a good example.

“I think we have good communication and we’re able to always turn it around the weekend.

“And in qualifying, we’re able to put it all together as a set-up and everything. So, that will for sure effects consistency.”

The RB F1 team are also bringing an upgrade package to the Spanish GP weekend with a new rear wing and floor.

When asked whether he thinks they can close the gap to teams like Aston Martin, Tsunoda was quick to calm expectations.

“I don’t want to make any high expectation here or anything, so I wouldn’t say how much it will be. But like the upgrade seems like for sure gives some step forwards in general.

“At least what I experienced in the simulator, you don’t feel much characteristic change, just feels the general load got better, which is a good sign. Obviously we have to check in the track. But for sure feel something and as lap time you have something, yeah.”

Tsunoda also mentioned that the team is focusing on making gains in the high speed corners as that is the area where they can make bigger gains at present.

“I think our strengths were more towards low speed. So now we need [more] load in higher speed corners, I would say.

“And we tend to always kind of struggle at. And especially in the next coming races, quite a lot of high speed corners characteristic track. So we focus on that and we’re seeing this track.

“But in general we’re not too bad. But it’s more towards high speed that we want to focus more.”