Yuki Tsunoda Reveals AlphaTauri Changed F1 Pedals Over Height Difference To Gasly

Published 03/16/2021, 1:41 PM EDT
Formula One F1 – Abu Dhabi Grand Prix – Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates – December 11, 2020 AlphaTauri’s Yuki Tsunoda arrives at the Yas Marina Circuit Hamad I Mohammed/Pool via REUTERS


AlphaTauri are the winners of the 2021 pre-season testing in Bahrain. They clocked in most laps of any team during the event. However, it wasn’t 100% plain-sailing as their rookie driver, Yuki Tsunoda, encountered some problems early on.

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Before the Japanese driver set the pace on the afternoon session of the final day, he had major issues on Day 1, which limited his running. That also continued during the second day. Tsunoda later attributed it to the pedals of his AlphaTauri car.

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – DECEMBER 15: Yuki Tsunoda of Scuderia AlphaTauri and Japan during the F1 Young Drivers Test at Yas Marina Circuit on December 15, 2020 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Peter Fox/Getty Images)

They are made to the specifications of his 1.77m tall teammate, Pierre Gasly. Being the shortest driver on the grid at 1.59m, he understandably had some trouble reaching for the throttle and the brake.

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Fortunately, Red Bull‘s sister team is already reacting to it, as revealed by Tsunoda at the conclusion of the test event in a driver’s conference.

“I am having a very special pedal kit, which compared to Pierre is a lot of difference for the height. So, that’s why they are trying to make it a different way for the pedals. And that is why I had an issue yesterday. I already heard from the mechanics and we had a good step for making it strong,” said Tsunoda.

Yuki Tsunoda sees the lighter side of his short frame

Yuki is the shortest driver this century in F1, 2cm taller than Anthony Davidson. He is himself just 2cms taller than the shortest driver in the history of the sport, Andrea Montermini.

Akin to Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo, he prefers to see the funny side of things. Last month, when Formula 1’s official Twitter account asked its users, “In 2021, Yuki Tsunoda will ____”, he came up with a hilarious reply. Watch it for yourself below –

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Incidentally, he is also taking the mantle from Lando Norris in the height department. Lando, standing at 1.70m, was last season’s shortest driver.

Next comes the season-opener in Bahrain. The AlphaTauri duo clocked in a good amount of laps and set the pace. So, they will look to keep the momentum going in Sakhir.

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Bharat Aggarwal

692 articles

Bharat Aggarwal is a sports analyst for EssentiallySports, covering Formula 1 and NBA. A Delhi University graduate, Bharat has multi-year experience in sports writing, having closely worked with the content strategy aspect as well. Bharat Aggarwal supports Manchester United, Lewis Hamilton, Cristiano Ronaldo, Rafael Nadal, Dirk Nowitzki, Sachin Tendulkar, Ayrton Senna, Kristaps Porzingis, and Dallas Mavericks.

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