Crash.net
It appears to have been a positive start to the season for Toro Rosso, but how does it look from where you are?

Franz Tost
Yeah I must say, we have quite a good start to the season. Because you must not forget that we have two young drivers, two inexperienced drivers. The car is working well the team is doing a reasonable job and the drivers are doing a very good job. Therefore, from the first four races, I am quite satisfied.

Crash.net
The team is doing a 'reasonable job'...?

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Franz Tost
Sometimes we got some problems with pit stops and so on. We have to find a way to reduce some of these errors.

Crash.net
Much of the pre-season focus for you was the selection of a very young driver line-up... do you feel your decision has been vindicated by their performances after the first five races?

Franz Tost
I must say that the performance from both of them is at a very high level. As we expected from Red Bull otherwise we wouldn't have taken them into the team.
What I like about both of them is how committed they are, how much focused they are. Therefore, I am convinced that both of them will have quite a successful future.

Crash.net
Let's talk about your drivers individually... how have you rated Carlos Sainz's start to the season?

Franz Tost
Carlos' strengths are his experience. He has already won many races so far, and you can see that drove last year and won the Formula Renault 3.5. That means that especially now with the tracks in Europe, he has an advantage because it's not only knowing where the corners are, (all of the drivers know where the corners are) but how to get the most out of qualifying, how to use the tyres in the best possible way and also especially in qualifying. In Spain he had an advantage and he used this advantage well. He is doing a really, really good job also from how he sets up the car, how he does technical feedback, how his preparation is with the engineers. I'm very positively surprised by this.

Crash.net
And what about Max Verstappen? How does he compare?

Franz Tost
They are quite on a similar level on their performance out there. But we must not forget that Max is in the second year in a senior series and therefore we must wait a little bit, but currently, they are on quite a similar level.

Were you ever hesitant about signing Max?

Franz Tost
No, I was pushing for this. I know Max from karting. I observed him - he won the World Championship, he was the Kart European Champion. I saw his Formula Three races and for example when I saw his F3 race last year at the Norisring, it was raining, there was a lap time of 52-53 seconds and he was two seconds faster than the rest of the field. You could see this is the next very good driver. I was more than happy when I got the telephone call from Helmut from Red Bull that Verstappen would have a full contract. I was convinced that he could immediately do F1. Not because F1 is easier to drive nowadays. F1 is always the peak of motorsport, it's always difficult to drive if you're coming to the limit. But how he was prepared because don't forget, he has around 10 years racing experience at the highest level because when he was karting, he was the highest level. He was with his father, who is a fantastic teacher. He grew up around tyres, engines and cars. Our press lady Fabi remembers back when Jos was with Max when he was two years old in the factory. If you grow up in this environment and if you are so lucky to be so skilled then you can come up at the end with this fantastic performance.

Crash.net
Has he shown that in the first few races?

Franz Tost
Exactly.

Crash.net
James Key has been an important signing for you - how important has his influence been on the team?

Franz Tost
This is James Key's car. This is by far the best Toro Rosso which has ever been built. The performance of the car we could see in the first four races because I think we have a fantastic chassis and we are coming up with some upgrades and I must say that James has recruited a really good crew around him from the technical side. I'm looking quite positively to the future.

Crash.net
How confident are you about its evolution over the course of the season?

Franz Tost
We are developing the car, of course, we can't have the development speed of the top teams because Toro Rosso doesn't have the financial resources for this, so we are limited by finances. We don't have ?300-400m like other teams have. But I think that within our financial frame, we can do quite an efficient job.

Crash.net
Suggestions that Toro Rosso could form a relationship with Renault surfaced earlier this year... has there been any change on this front?

Franz Tost
Toro Rosso has had two periods," he told Crash.net in an exclusive, wide-ranging interview. "The first period was from 2006 to 2009 when we got drawings and parts from Red Bull Technologies and it changed the regulation. The second period started when we had to build up our infrastructure, which meant we had to build up our aero, tech and design department, purchasing department, production and so on. And this process will finish at the end of this year. The new building is ready and then we have quite good computer infrastructure from the side, but as well from the people, which meant as I said before, James Key has built a strong technical team around him and this will help us to come up with a competitive cars in the future. The next step for Toro Rosso is to work very close together with the manufacturer, because we have our unit formula and this means that if you're not directing work in the development acting more with the manufacturer, then it's difficult to come up with the performance you need to become a frontrunner. This should be the plan of Toro Rosso. This is the reason I said if I know who has the team, the shares of the team, for the team itself it can only be positive."

Crash.net
Does this mean Renault specifically, or any potential manufacturer?

Franz Tost
Yes, generally. Renault came into the picture because they said maybe wanted to be more involved in F1. They want to see a white and yellow car for their identification, for their brand, therefore there was a discussion to buy shares in Toro Rosso. I saw no problem, it's only positive. It's an ongoing discussion. I think at the moment Renault will work very hard on the power unit side. Then they will take into consideration the next step and then we will see.

Crash.net
Is there a hurdle to have Red Bull agree to such a sale to its power unit partner?

Franz Tost
Don't know yet. It's never been discussed, its never been taken into consideration. We don't know yet.

Crash.net
Is the infrastructure now fully in place to develop your own machine confidently?

Franz Tost
The easiest way was to work together with Red Bull Technology very closely because RBT were the most experienced and best technical crew in F1. This was fantastic cooperation and I said in those days, it could be a vision for the future to have strong manufacturer teams and then allow other teams ride its cars or whatever. But the regulation didn't allow it anymore, so we had to change it. Whether it was correct or not is another issue.

Crash.net
Customer cars are becoming a topic again in F1, what is the right direction for the sport in your view?

Franz Tost
It's how you see F1. If you see F1 that every team must design their own parts, at least the parts which are the listed parts, it's the regulation and this is how it has to be and that has to be accepted.

Crash.net
Is there frustration that the team's voices aren't being heard?

Franz Tost
It's frustrating, it's the similar facts that every team tries to keep their performance and tries to keep their advantage. Therefore teams don't agree if it's to their disadvantage. It's quite a normal process.

Crash.net
Do you think Toro Rosso is capable of the top five as it is?

Franz Tost
I'm still convinced that we can achieve the position if we don't have too many more technical failures. If we do not finish the races and we do not score points, it's not possible.

Crash.net
How frustrating is it that, despite having a much improved car, the engine is proving something of an Achilles Heel?

Franz Tost
We see now that they are coming up with modifications and then we are hope that their reliability will be improved.

Crash.net
Surprised to find Renault being in a worse position in 2015?

Franz Tost
No, it's a very complex topic. As I said before, they are working very hard and they are trying for a solution.

How proud are you to have seen your drivers progress, such as Daniel Ricciardo and Daniil Kvyat?

Franz Tost
It's good for Toro Rosso which means that the team has done a reasonably good job, because otherwise the drivers wouldn't have reached this level. It's confirmation of the decision from Red Bull to do this with Toro Rosso. One point is that if we give the young RB drivers a chance to come on, it's good.

Are you surprised that Red Bull didn't take a punt on Jean-Eric Vergne instead?

Franz Tost
It was not an easy decision, but at the end, Toro Rosso is known as a rookie team for the young driver, therefore we decided to go this way. If you look at the results now, it was the correct decision.

Crash.net
What do you expect from Daniil?

Franz Tost
Daniil, you must not forget that he is only in his second season. So he's still learning a lot but he is a very high skilled driver and he's very committed. Therefore, once the car and everything is on the front row, he will come up with good results.

Crash.net
Of all the young talents to come through Toro Rosso, which was the best to work with?

Franz Tost
You know it's not only the talent, it's how the driver is committed, his attitude, his discipline, how's his way of working and I must say that all the drivers which came up to Red Bull have done a really good job. There was Vettel of course, Ricciardo. He learnt a lot and he is now I think he is a very high skilled driver. Daniil Kvyat. I'm really happy with Max Verstappen and Carlos Sainz - both of them have the potential for a successful F1 career.

Crash.net
Will they be picked up by Red Bull in the future?

Franz Tost
I'm convinced by this. Because all the time I really ask it.