Yuki Tsunoda has given some insight on the impact the floods in Emilia Romagna last week had on Faenza – home to his AlphaTauri team.
The grand prix weekend in Imola had to be called off last Wednesday with heavy rainfall sparking severe flooding and landslides in the local area surrounding the track, with the paddock at the circuit also impacted.
The right decision was made by F1 to cancel the race, with emergency services given as much opportunity as possible to help out with the relief effort in the region.
Towns like Faenza were hit hard and AlphaTauri driver Yuki Tsunoda was there to witness first hand the devastation, with him living in the area as his team are based there.
Duly, he helped out with the clean up operation, alongside members of his team, and clips of him lending a hand did the rounds on social media, earning plaudits from fans.
The Japanese driver was more than happy to help, too, and has revealed ahead of the Monaco Grand Prix, speaking to GIVEMESPORT exclusively, the extent of the damage, with some AlphaTauri team members having to stay in the factory thanks to the effect the extreme weather had on their homes:
“It had a huge impact on Faenza,” said Tsunoda.
“My house was okay but about 80% of Faenza was flooded, which I have never experienced. I’ve only seen it on TV and there it was literally happening in front of me.
“So lots of people were in a much worse situation than me, lots of the mechanics and colleagues from the factory had to stay in the factory a night or a couple of nights because they lost their houses, it was just crazy.
“Even in that very difficult situation the whole of Faenza just went outside and were helping each other, removing the mud as much as possible on the road or in properties.
“They just did lots of work and they were doing whole days in a row. I tried to help a little bit, much less than others were doing, and it just felt like it was taking forever.
“You’d scoop up some mud and then more would just go into the hole that I made. I saw lots of family, kids helping each other – it was good to see people helping each other. The people who finished one job would then offer to help someone else.
“It showed that the people of Faenza are united and how good people are and people said thank you to me for cleaning. It was a nice experience and I would have just loved to have helped more.”