F1 »

Bourdais: Toro Rosso sacked me by text message!

Sébastien Bourdais has revealed that he was informed he had been sacked by Scuderia Toro Rosso by text message – accusing his former employers of a lack of 'style' after being evicted from the Red Bull 'junior' concern's revolving ejector seat.

Bourdais was unceremoniously dismissed following last month's German Grand Prix at the Nürburgring, confirming long-running paddock rumours and bringing down the curtain on an overwhelmingly disappointing F1 career that lasted just 27 races and accrued a mere six points.

For a man who entered the top flight at the beginning of last year – somewhat belatedly, many felt – with a glittering reputation as the record-breaking, reigning four-time Champ Car king, it was a poor return indeed. Admitting that the Red Bull Racing RB5-based STR4 was not built 'around a driver' – placing the onus upon the drivers to adapt to it – Bourdais confessed that such a skill 'was never my best strength'.

Though there were genuine signs of improvement in the latter half of 2008 – with six top ten qualifying positions from the last seven grands prix, backed up by a string of encouraging race day performances to boot – in 2009 he failed to start higher than 14th in nine outings, and troubled the scorers just twice.

Worse still, Bourdais found himself repeatedly shown up and outperformed by young rookie team-mate and namesake Sébastien Buemi, a driver who some had suggested was not F1 standard prior to the start of the campaign. After qualifying 1.3 seconds adrift of Buemi and more than a second shy of the next lowest-placed driver at the Nürburgring, Toro Rosso decided enough was enough, and the man from Le Mans was shown the door, to be replaced at the Hungaroring a fortnight later by Jaime Alguersuari, the youngest starter in the official 60-year history of the world championship. The threat of legal action on Bourdais' part was subsequently settled out-of-court.

“The way they got rid of me was very disappointing,” the 30-year-old told French magazine Auto Hébdo. “Dietrich Mateschitz (Red Bull magnate) was at the Nürburgring but he did not speak with me. He did not call me. Everything was done by SMS, which to me has no style.”

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Sebastien Bourdais (FRA), Toro Rosso STR4, German F1 Grand Prix, Nurburgring, 10-12th, July 2009
15.11.2015 - Race, A Ferrari fan
15.11.2015 - Race, Max Verstappen (NED) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR10
15.11.2015 - Race, Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W06 waves to the fans
15.11.2015 - Race, Felipe Nasr (BRA) Sauber C34 leads Jenson Button (GBR)  McLaren Honda MP4-30.
15.11.2015 - Race, Daniil Kvyat (RUS) Red Bull Racing RB11 leads Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF15-T
15.11.2015 - Race, Felipe Nasr (BRA) Sauber C34
15.11.2015 - Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF15-T
15.11.2015 - Race, Daniil Kvyat (RUS) Red Bull Racing RB11 leads Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W06
15.11.2015 - Race, Pastor Maldonado (VEN) Lotus F1 Team E23
15.11.2015 - Race, Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E23
15.11.2015 - Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF15-T and Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren Honda MP4-30
15.11.2015 - Race, William Stevens (GBR) Manor Marussia F1 Team and Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sahara Force India F1 VJM08
15.11.2015 - Race, Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM08 and Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB11
15.11.2015 - Race, Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Williams F1 Team FW37
15.11.2015 - Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren Honda MP4-30
15.11.2015 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF15-T
15.11.2015 - Race, Jenson Button (GBR)  McLaren Honda MP4-30. leads Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren Honda MP4-30

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.

Nanbawan - Unregistered

August 15, 2009 10:33 PM

In the same Auto Hebdo Bourdais states that he's not good at adapting his style to the car but rather the opposite. As an example, he said that when he came to ChampCar he was thrashed by Junqueira, things got better when he was able to suit the car to his driving, something he wasn't allowed to do at STR. SB a whiner ? What kind of person would admit those things, for me he's rather a very honest, factual and straight talking kind of guy. Something not well perceived in the F1 circles it seems... In Rome...

© 1999 - 2015 Crash Media Group | Built by Accelerate Agency

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.