Toro Rosso Launches STR 10 In Spain


Just one day before the opening test for the 2015 Formula One season, Toro Rosso launched their newest entry, the STR 10, in front of the world’s media Saturday Morning at their pit lane in Jerez, Spain.

The junior Red Bull team, as it is officially known, has moved up in placing, and last season picked up quite a few points, thanks to their drivers Danii Kvyat and Jean-Eric Vergne. However, these two drivers went their own ways, with the latter managing to wait for a return drive, but was ignored.

Kvyat won the right to move up to the senior team and departed for Red Bull Racing, to drive alongside Daniel Ricciardo. Vergne, had many other formula offers, but chose to risk it and move to Marenello to become a development driver for Ferrari. With both of these drivers gone, Toro Rosso decided that the best thing to do was hire two rookie drivers with very popular last names.

The first was Dutchman Max Vertsappen, the son of former F1 great Jos, who drove in the 1990’s and 2000’s for teams like Arrows and had a brief stint with Benetton. The other is Carlos Sainz Jr, who is the son of the great driver who is more formally known as a famous rally driver. Both drivers combined have a combined age of 37.

The task for the team itself is to try and get as high as fifth in the constructor’s championship, something that Team Manager Franz Tost feels will be the main target for the year.

“The target is quite clear, we have to finish in fifth place in the constructors’ championship,” Tost said to ESPN F1. “That means that the drivers must be permanently in the points.

“We are building up quite a good infrastructure in Faenza and it’s a little bit historically related because when the FIA changed the regulations [to ban customer cars] we had to design and build the car ourselves and we had to build up the infrastructure. This took a couple of years and we will be finished with the building at the end of this year, but the building is one side and the other side is the team.

“In the last two or three years we have built up quite a strong technical team under James [Key, technical director] and it’s changed from last year to this year making a big jump forward. With the package we have got together now, from the car side, from the driver side and from the financial side, we must be in the position to fight for fifth place in the constructors’ championship and this is our target. We have to put in the effort from the team side, the driver side and the technical side, but I am convinced we can achieve it.”

Technical Director Key is also hopeful like Tost that fifth is a reasonable goal.

“There’s nothing wrong with a bit of ambition, we don’t want to be seventh,” Key said. “As Franz says, we have been working on this, and although there are no guarantees, you have to set yourself some high targets. When you think about that kind of target, of course you recognize that you’ve got to go and compete against people that have won world championships in the past and have very high expectations. Toro Rosso haven’t won the championship, so we have to build up to that and that’s what we have been doing with the infrastructure and the team.

“I think we are, from personal experience, in a position where we are much more comfortable with what we can achieve. Last year we were distant in points but we weren’t that distant in performance, we just didn’t make the most of it.”

Sainz will take the reins for the opening test tomorrow, while Vertsappen will alternate with his teammate for the rest of the week.