Yuki Tsunoda says that he doesn’t feel like he “pushed too much,” on his tyres in the Feature Race, despite seeing Mick Schumacher overtake him for the win, with fresher Pirellis. Instead, the Carlin racer believes getting held up behind Artem Markelov after his pitstop lost him the most time, and ultimately, cost him the win.
The polesitter ended up finishing second, just over 6s behind Schumacher, for his fifth podium of the year. The result lifts him to fourth in the table, level on points with third placed Christian Lundgaard.
“The tyres were still quite controllable,” he explained. “I didn't slide and there was no wheelspin or anything. Maybe there was a tiny bit too much pushing in the beginning, but still it was ok.
“It was just that (Artem) Markelov came in front of me, and it took me a little bit of time to overtake him. I couldn't overtake. I also went a little bit outside of the racing line and onto the marbles, and the grip suddenly goes low. I got passed by two cars, and that was also my mistake. It was bad luck. After that, I think I did a good job with my tyre management.”
At one point, Tsunoda was overtaken by title rival Callum Ilott too, but the Carlin racer re-gathered himself and ended up reclaiming the position before the end of the race.
“We had quite similar pace,” he continued. “Maybe just a little bit of an advantage for me. I think it's quite hard to go around the outside of Turn 2 and overtake, like Mick did. I maximised the braking and tried to brake later than Callum.
“He missed the apex and I got better traction. After that I just did my job. I tried not to go too much to the outside and take the marbles. I had the experience from Artem. It was a good overtake.”
Despite the frustration of missing out on a third win of the season, Tsunoda was pleased with the overall package of the team and believes that he has the pace for another strong result tomorrow.
He concluded: “At the beginning of the race I wanted to take P1, especially when I think about the Drivers' Championship. I think the team did a really good job for this race week so far, and I've still got a chance tomorrow. I'll deliver for them.”