Scuderia Toro Rosso team principal Franz Tost says he is confident that Jaime Alguersuari will soon be fighting for a position in Q2 after the Spanish rookie made an encouraging start to his F1 career in Hungary.
After Toro Rosso dispensed with the services of Sebastien Bourdais following the German Grand Prix, reigning British F3 champion Alguersuari was given the chance to make history as the youngest ever F1 driver – despite having only completed straight-line running in a Formula 1 car prior to his first race weekend.
Despite concerns that the teenager wasn't ready to make the step up due to F1's testing ban, and the resultant lack of running, Alguersuari enjoyed a solid weekend as he stayed out of trouble and kept his car on track to come home in 15th place, one position ahead of team-mate Sebastien Buemi.
It was a result that pleased team boss Tost, who said he was confident that Alguersuari would soon be up to speed once he has had more time at the wheel.
“Well done to Jaime on finishing his first race, which means he has learned a lot this weekend,” he said. “That was our main target with him.
“He will need another two races, after which I expect to see him make it through to Q2.”
Alguersuari himself was pleased to have made it to the finish in his debut race, although he admitted that it had been far from easy in the closing stages.
“I am very happy to have finished, but the last five laps were very difficult from the physical point of view,” he said. “I found it hard to keep the car on the pace, but I am very satisfied. P15 is not so bad, but the main objective was to complete the 70 laps, with no mistakes, maintaining my pace.
“I have learned a lot but I have to say there are some aspects of F1 which made me think, shit this is tough!”