One of the biggest questions remaining this Formula 1 season is AlphaTauri’s driver lineup for the 2024 campaign. With Yuki Tsunoda, Liam Lawson, and Daniel Ricciardo seemingly vying for the two available spots, one of those drivers will be the odd man out next year.
According to at least one report, the decision has been made, and will be announced at this weekend’s Japanese Grand Prix.
German outlet Auto Motor und Sport is reporting that the team has decided to forge ahead with a Tsunoda/Ricciardo pairing for the 2024 season, and that a contract extension for Tsunoda will be announced at his home race, this weekend’s Japanese Grand Prix.
The reporting comes at an interesting time, given what has happened since Ricciardo suffered an injury ahead of the Dutch Grand Prix. That opened the door for Lawson to slide into his seat, on a temporary basis, and the young driver has finished ahead of Tsunoda in each of those three races, securing his first F1 points this past weekend with a ninth-place finish at the Singapore Grand Prix.
Of course, that statement requires a mountain of context, as Tsunoda finished ahead of Lawson at the Dutch Grand Prix, but was dropped below him due to a grid penalty. Tsunoda also posted back-to-back DNF at Monza and Marina Bay, when his AT04 failed on the formation lap at the Italian Grand Prix, and on the first lap in Singapore.
Still, Lawson’s success led some to believe that the pairing for next year would be him alongside Ricciardo. But according to at least one reputable outlet, the organization is going in a different direction for next season.