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Tsunoda to join Vettel in Red Bull Nordschleife showcase after Verstappen denied

AlphaTauri’s Yuki Tsunoda will join Sebastian Vettel and Daniel Ricciardo at the Red Bull Formula Nurburgring event, when Formula 1 cars will make their long-awaited return to the Nordschleife.

Yuki Tsunoda, AlphaTauri

Earlier this month, it was announced that retired four-time F1 world champion Vettel will make his return to the cockpit of grand prix machinery for the showcase event in Germany on 9 September.

He will pilot the Red Bull RB7 - an Adrian Newey-designed car that claimed 12 race wins in addition to securing 18 of the 19 available pole positions - in which he dominated the 2011 season.

For the run around the revered 12.9-mile track, Vettel’s car will use e-fuels to minimise emissions.

Similarly, Vettel used carbon-neutral fuel for his 2022 British Grand Prix parade laps completed aboard the ex-Nigel Mansell 1992 double-championship winning Williams FW14B he bought at auction.

Meanwhile, his former Red Bull team-mate Daniel Ricciardo will drive the Red Bull RB8 from 2012.

These runs will mark the first time F1 machinery has taken to the Nordschleife since the 2013 Nurburgring 24 Hours weekend, when seven-time F1 world champion Michael Schumacher guided his Mercedes W02 from 2011.

Tsunoda has now been added to the list of headline acts for this year. The Japanese racer will make his Nurburgring Nordschleife bow behind the wheel of a Honda NSX GT3 Evo.

He said: “I've never driven at the Nurburgring before, so I'm really looking forward to the event in September.

“I can't wait to drive around it in my Honda NSX GT3 Evo, which is an incredible car and a proven race-winning machine at the highest level of GT3 competition.

Tsunoda will drive a special AlphaTauri-liveried Honda NSX GT3 Evo

Tsunoda will drive a special AlphaTauri-liveried Honda NSX GT3 Evo

Photo by: Red Bull Content Pool

“The Nordschleife is a legendary circuit, I just experienced it on the Gran Turismo videogame and already enjoyed it a lot.”

Notably, current driver Tsunoda has been added to the line-up while reigning double F1 champion Max Verstappen was denied an opportunity to feature at the Red Bull Formula Nurburgring event.

He reckoned Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko had swiftly ruled out the possibility knowing that Verstappen would have tried to “go to the limits” and chase the lap record, which stands at 5m19.546s and was set by Timo Bernhard aboard the Porsche 919 Hybrid Evo special project in 2018.

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