Jean-Eric Vergne was possibly the most disappointed man in the pit lane in Canada after qualifying, after not only once again failing to progress from Q1 in qualifying, but even finding himself out-performed by both of the Caterham Racing cars to bump him all the way down to 20th on the starting grid for Sunday's Canadian Grand Prix.

"My little mistake in FP3 cost me a lot," he admitted after finishing well off the expected pace in qualifying. "I didn't get any running this morning ... On top of that, my car was quite different today to yesterday, so it was not the easiest thing to adapt to it in just a couple of laps in Q1."

"We had made several changes to his car overnight and it is never easy to adapt to something new when your first time in the car is in Q1," explained Toro Rosso's chief engineer Laurent Mekies.

The accident earlier in the day had simply been a case of edging out too far onto the verge and getting caught out by how waterlogged the grass still was: "I got a little bit on the grass which was wet from all last night's rain and the car just got away from me."

But Vergne was at least confident that there had been nothing amiss with the car itself after the necessary repairs. "The guys worked well to get everything back together for qualifying," he said.

The other major factor that prevented him from setting a representative time was the traffic out on the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve during a busy Q1.

"I never really got a clean lap, encountering a lot of traffic which is therefore very disappointing," he said. "Even if the traffic would not have made a huge difference to my position on the grid, some cleaner laps would have allowed me to improve my performance and get a better feel for the car with this different set-up."

It will certainly be embarrassing for him to be behind the Caterham cars - but there was jubilation for both drivers, although Heikki Kovalainen believed he could have done even better in Montreal.

"My last lap was quite a long way up but I made a small mistake in the final chicane which maybe cost me a couple of tenths," he said. "It didn't affect my position and, really, I probably got as much as I could out of the car today."

"Heikki may have been able to get his car into the late 1.15s but it is unlikely he would have been able to push [Toro Rosso's Daniel] Ricciardo into the drop zone," agreed technical director Mark Smith.

"We are edging ever closer to Toro Rosso and the fact both cars finished ahead of Vergne is encouraging," he added with a big smile.