Marko Confirms Tsunoda For 2025 Seat In RB Ahead Of Canadian Grand Prix

Thursday, 06 June 2024 at 22:10
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Red Bull's motorsport advisor, Helmut Marko, who has a big say over who gets to drive in RB, asserted Yuki Tsunoda "is set" ahead of the 2024 Canadian Grand Prix.
With Red Bull extending Sergio Perez's current contract by two years, nine seats on the grid remain unclaimed, and two seats in RB are among them.
The fact that the Austrian team signed Perez for two years also ruins any dreams Daniel Ricciardo or Yuki Tsunoda might have had about being promoted.
Tsunoda has been driving brilliantly this season, but the team from Milton Keynes just didn't seem to consider him a serious contender for the seat next to Max Verstappen.
Speculations about Tsunoda's dissatisfaction and potential exit from the Red Bull family started emerging recently, but Helmut Marko put all of these partially to bed. Speaking to Kleine Zeitung, he said: "Yuki Tsunoda is set, that's clear."
This suggests that while the Japanese driver hasn't officially signed a new contract with RB, the team has already decided they want him to be one of their two drivers moving forward.

What about the second seat in RB?

The second seat in RB remains very much in contention. At the moment, it seems Red Bull will only be looking at Daniel Ricciardo or Liam Lawson and will not consider drivers outside of their pool.
BBC reporter Andrew Benson wrote this week that Christian Horner is very much protecting Daniel Ricciardo, so even if his performances aren't where they would like them to be, he should be safe for next year.
Unfortunately, this scenario would leave young and talented Lawson without a seat. Although Marko says he can apply elsewhere in case he doesn't get a seat, RB seems to be Lawson's best and perhaps only option.

"[Lawson] is there at every race, and we are in close contact. There is a clause with Lawson. If we don't offer him an active seat, he is free for other teams."