Frenchman Gasly re-joined the Faenza team halfway through 2019 after being demoted by Red Bull, taking his first ever win at the 2020 Italian Grand Prix. Teammate Tsunoda made his debut in 2021 after impressing Red Bull and Honda during his junior formula career.
While Gasly has been performing at a high level in 2021, almost single-handedly keeping AlphaTauri in the fight for fifth in the constructors’ championship against Alpine, rookie Tsunoda has had a more difficult time finding the right balance between speed and consistency.
Team boss Tost says he wants Red Bull to keep his team’s driver line-up unchanged for next year, backing Tsunoda to make progress after having a full season of F1 under his belt, and hopes an announcement on the duo will follow over the summer break.
“Yeah, I hope so, because I don’t see any other driver there,” Tost said.
“I hope we will also next year be with Pierre and with Yuki because for Yuki, then it will be the second season and he knows now the tracks.
“Because you must not forget, we will go in the second half of the season where Yuki doesn’t even know the race tracks.
“In Europe, he raced in Formula 2 and Formula 3 and so on. But we are coming to America, he has never raced there. We are coming to Mexico, where he didn’t race. We will come to Sao Paulo where he didn’t race.”
After coming sixth in the Hungarian Grand Prix, Tsunoda has upped his points tally to 18 compared to Gasly’s haul of 50 points but faces more work ahead to get on top of qualifying, in which he has been vastly outperformed by his more experienced teammate.
Tost argued Tsunoda’s rookie season struggles are “nothing special” and part of the deal when giving a chance to a young driver.
“Pierre is doing a fantastic job, and Yuki, once more, is a newcomer and he is doing a good job,” Tost added.
“He has to get experience and he has to learn a lot but that is nothing special.
“That’s logical with young drivers. That’s the risk you take when a rookie comes on board.
“Both drivers I think are confident enough. I don’t see any reason to change anything during the summer break on our driver line-up. I also don’t see any alternatives.”