Sébastien Buemi has admitted that he is pinning his hopes on Scuderia Toro Rosso's recently-introduced F-duct to help propel the Red Bull 'junior' outfit up the F1 2010 grid and ultimately enable the team to leapfrog closest rival Sauber for eighth spot in the final constructors' rankings.
STR first ran its F-duct during practice for last weekend's Italian Grand Prix at Monza, before electing not to continue with it for qualifying and the race itself – but Buemi acknowledges that whilst it could take a little while to get the best out of it, the aerodynamic device represents the small Faenza-based concern's best chance of bridging the 17-point gap presently separating it from Sauber in the title chase.
“It is always difficult to quantify what you can gain with the F-duct,” the young Swiss ace told his team's official podcast, “but one thing that is for sure is that if you can get it to work properly, it's [worth] between two and six or seven tenths [a lap] – it depends on the circuit.
“We've got to make it work, because this is the way we will be able to fight against Sauber and finish ahead of them in the championship. We are putting all our efforts together to make it work for Singapore, but it's going to be difficult. We are now working hard in the wind tunnel to find out why it did not really work [in Italy], and then we will see if we can have it for Singapore."
Team principal Franz Tost echoed his driver's conviction that the teething problems experienced at Monza can be swiftly traced, resolved and eradicated so that Toro Rosso can benefit from the F-duct's full potential under the Singapore spotlights in a week's time.
“It's the hope that we can race it there,” the Austrian affirmed. “We just have to analyse why it didn't work so well [in Italy] on Friday, but I'm convinced that our engineering department will find the solution.”