Alesi convinced son Giuliano will have stronger 2023
Jean Alesi is convinced that his son Giuliano will be stronger in 2023 amid a bruising season in SUPER GT and Super Formula for the second-generation racer.
Giuliano Alesi, Jean Alesi, #36 au TOM'S GR Supra
Alesi Jr was handed the chance to race for TOM'S in both Super Formula and SUPER GT this year after a first season in Japan in 2021 that yielded a Super Formula win and runner-up in the Super Formula Lights standings.
However, the 2022 season has proven much trickier for the 23-year-old, who sits second to last in the Super Formula standings and has struggled for form in SUPER GT sharing a car with reigning champion Sho Tsuboi.
Alesi Sr made his first visit to the SUPER GT paddock since the start of his son's tenure in Japan earlier this month at Autopolis, where Alesi and Tsuboi dropped out of title contention with an eighth-place finish.
The ex-Ferrari Formula 1 driver said he is confident that another year of experience in Japan's two top categories will make a big difference to Giuliano's prospects within the Toyota squad in 2023.
"It’s a very strong championship and the level of the drivers is very high, the teams, the competition at every level," Alesi Sr told Motorsport.com's Japanese edition. "Altogether, you need a lot of experience, and the best for a young driver is to have a good family environment.
"The story of Giuliano at TOM’S in Japan is unique, because when he arrived in Japan he didn’t really have a good reputation in terms of performance.
"[TOM'S owner Nobuhide] Tachi-san gave him the chance to drive in Super Formula Lights, and also Super Formula because of COVID-19, and he did a fantastic season, also in GT300.
"This year has been more difficult; maybe he pushed himself too much to try to compensate for his lack of experience. Small mistakes, like the overtaking under yellow flags [in the Sugo SUPER GT race], this kind of mistakes have to be experience for him [so he doesn’t do them] any more.
"But the experience he is gaining now, every race for him, also having Tsuboi as a teammate, is very important. I believe next year he will be strong."
Alesi Sr praised his son for making the decision to move to the Japanese racing scene without any ambitions of returning to Europe in future after two unfulfilling seasons in Formula 2 as a Ferrari junior.
"The strength of Giuliano is his determination, because he came to Japan without his head still being in Europe," said Jean. "He came to Japan with his head in Japan. He moved his racing life to Japan, so that’s his strength.
"He is living in Gotemba, not in the middle of a [big] city like Tokyo. He is trying his best to integrate himself as much as possible with racing culture, because the team is very close."
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