Yuki Tsunoda will join AlphaTauri team to replace Daniil Kvyat in Formula One

Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri Kvyat
Peter Fox/Getty Images

FAENZA, Italy — Japan will have a driver in Formula One for the first time in seven years after AlphaTauri confirmed Wednesday that Yuki Tsunoda will replace Daniil Kvyat at the team in 2021.

Tsunoda will move into Formula One after placing third in Formula Two last season with three victories. He won the F2 rookie of the year award as the highest-scoring driver in his first season. Tsunoda, 20, will be the first F1 driver to be born in the 21st century.

He will partner Pierre Gasly at AlphaTauri, which is Red Bull’s second team with a focus on developing talented drivers who can represent the main team.

“Red Bull has been following Yuki’s career for a while now, and I am sure he will be a great asset to our team,” AlphaTauri team principal Franz Tost said. “Watching him in Formula 2 this year, he has demonstrated the right mix of racing aggression and good technical understanding.”

Tsunoda drove this year’s AlphaTauri car during testing Tuesday in Abu Dhabi, placing fifth-fastest of 15 runners.

The last Japanese driver in F1 was Kamui Kobayashi, who raced for Toyota, Sauber and Caterham before leaving at the end of the 2014 season.

Kvyat is without an F1 drive for 2021. The Russian has spent six seasons in F1 with AlphaTauri and Red Bull.

In 110 starts from 2014-20, he became his country’s most successful driver with three podiums and a best finish of second place at the Hungaroring in 2015, his lone full season with Red Bull. Kvyat was demoted after four races in 2016 to Scuderia Toro Rosso, which was rebranded as AlphaTauri last season.

Kvyat spent the 2018 season out of Formula One (and working as a development driver for Ferrari) after being dropped from the Red Bull program, but he returned with its developmental team last year.

The announcement of Tsunoda means that 18 of the 20 spots have been filled on the grid for the 2021 Formula One season. Mercedes (which is expected to re-sign Lewis Hamilton this month) and Red Bull (reportedly deciding between keeping Alex Albon or adding Sergio Perez) have the remaining openings.

IndyCar releases schedule for 2023 season

IndyCar schedule 2023
Douglas Stringer/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The NTT IndyCar Series’ 2023 schedule will feature the same number of races and tracks as this season with some minor reshuffling of dates.

IndyCar will open the 2023 season March 5 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida, and will conclude Sept. 10 at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California. The 107th Indy 500 will take place May 28 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The 17-race schedule will conclude with a stretch of eight races in the final nine weeks.

“The NTT IndyCar Series is on an impactful upward trajectory, making progress at a pace that befits our thrilling style of competition,” Penske Entertainment Corp. president and CEO Mark Miles said in a release. “The 2023 season provides an opportunity to further build on this trend, bringing our sport and its stars to more markets and households and reaching new consumers across the globe.”

There will be 15 events on NBC: 13 races (including six of the final seven) plus Indy 500 qualifying May 20-21. There also are three races on USA Network and the Toronto race exclusively on Peacock. All races on NBC and USA also will have live simulstreams on Peacock.

In partnership with NBC Sports, the 2022 IndyCar season was the most-watched in six years and the most-watched across NBC Sports on record. The 2022 season also was the most streamed season on record.

“We’re very excited for our 2023 NTT IndyCar Series schedule and to build on this past season’s viewership milestones,” NBC Sports vice president of programming Mike Perman said in a release. “In providing comprehensive coverage across NBC, Peacock and USA Network, NBC Sports is once again looking forward to telling the stories of these world-class drivers and this compelling series.”

Notable elements on the 2023 schedule:

–There will be the same balance of seven road course races, five street courses and five ovals.

–St. Pete will be the season opener for the 13th time.

–The Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix will move from Belle Isle to the streets of downtown.

–The NASCAR doubleheader weekend at the IMS road course will shift to mid-August.

–The World Wide Technology Raceway event will move from Saturday to Sunday.

Start times for the 2023 events will be announced at a later date.

Here’s the 2023 IndyCar schedule:

Date Race/Track Network/Platform
Sun., March 5 Streets of St. Petersburg NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 2 Texas Motor Speedway NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 16 Streets of Long Beach NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 30 Barber Motorsports Park NBC, Peacock
Sat., May 13 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) NBC, Peacock
Sun., May 28 The 107th Indianapolis 500 NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 4 Streets of Detroit NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 18 Road America USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 2 Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 16 Streets of Toronto Peacock
Sat., July 22 Iowa Speedway – Race 1 NBC, Peacock
Sun., July 23 Iowa Speedway – Race 2 NBC, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 6 Streets of Nashville NBC, Peacock
Sat., Aug. 12 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) USA Network, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 27 World Wide Technology Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 3 Portland International Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 10 WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca NBC, Peacock

*dates and networks/platforms are subject to change