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Toro Rosso 'missed an opportunity' in Melbourne

Toro Rosso's Jean-Eric Vergne looked set for a points finish in the first race of 2013, but ultimately he and Daniel Ricciardo came away empty-handed.
Toro Rosso had looked in line for a strong start to the 2013 F1 world championship, with Jean-Eric Vergne running strongly in the top ten for much of the race only to drop to 12th place and out of the points toward the end of the 58-lap Australian Grand Prix.

Team principal Franz Tost explained that the team's problems had stemmed from not delivering to their potential in the delayed qualifying session held earlier on Sunday morning six hours before the start of the race itself.

"We missed an opportunity to qualify better this morning, when we did not choose the best tyre strategy," Tost conceded. "Jean-Eric drove hard to try and get in the points, but was unable to do so. This performance does not reflect our true potential and we must do better, starting in a few day's time in Sepang."

Vergne was taking a more positive view of his achievements in Albert Park, Melbourne.

"Overall, I think the weekend showed we have a good car with which we ought to be able to go hunting for points in every race," said the Frenchman. "So I'm disappointed at not scoring here, but my hopes for the coming races are now higher than when we first started this weekend."

Vergne certainly hadn't lacked for incident during the race, that's for sure.

"It was a hot start, I was pushed to the outside and I ended up going through a gravel trap at one point," he said. "The first stint on the Option was only average, but the last two sections on the Prime tyre were very good and competitive and I was even in the points for a couple of corners right at the end."

However, he'd lost positions in the closing stages of the race and dropped out of contention for world championship points, despite his best efforts.

"As I passed Grosjean I flat-spotted my two front tyres and overshot my braking point when I tried to chase Button," he explained, before adding: "I think that fundamentally, we have a good car."

That will come as good news to his team mate Daniel Ricciardo, who managed only two thirds of his home grand Prix before being sidelined by a broken exhaust.

"In the end I had to retire with a problem linked to the exhaust," he confirmed. "I reported back to the pit wall that I could hear strange noises and I tried to fix it by changing a few functions, but it was not to be."

Even before that, Ricciardo hadn't featured as strongly as his team mate, and Franz Tost explained why that was the case.





Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
15.03.2013- Free Practice 1, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR8
15.03.2013- Free Practice 1, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR8
15.03.2013- Free Practice 2, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR8
15.03.2013- Jean-Eric Vergne (FRA) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR8
15.03.2013- Free Practice 2, Jean-Eric Vergne (FRA) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR8
15.03.2013- Free Practice 2, Jean-Eric Vergne (FRA) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR8
25.07.2014- Press conference, Eric Boullier (FRA) McLaren Racing Director and Monisha Kaltenborn (AUT), CEO and Team Principal, Sauber F1 Team
25.07.2014- Press conference, Eric Boullier (FRA) McLaren Racing Director.
25.07.2014- Press conference, Monisha Kaltenborn (AUT), CEO and Team Principal, Sauber F1 Team, Vijay Mallya (IND), Chairman and Managine Director Force India, Claire Williams (GBR) Williams Deputy Team Principal, Eric Boullier (FRA) McLaren Racing Director, Christian Horner (GBR), Red Bull Racing, Sporting Director and Marco Mattiacci (ITA) Team Principal, Scuderia Ferrari
25.07.2014- Free Practice 2, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB10
25.07.2014- Free Practice 2, Daniel Juncadella (ESP) Sahara Force India F1 VJM07 Test and Reserve Driver
25.07.2014- Free Practice 2, Daniel Juncadella (ESP) Sahara Force India F1 VJM07 Test and Reserve Driver
25.07.2014- Free Practice 2, Jean-Eric Vergne (FRA) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR9
25.07.2014- Free Practice 2, Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Williams F1 Team FW36 and Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB10
25.07.2014- Free Practice 2, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB10 leads Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB10
25.07.2014- Free Practice 2, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB10
25.07.2014- Free Practice 2, Jean-Eric Vergne (FRA) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR9
25.07.2014- Free Practice 2, Jean-Eric Vergne (FRA) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR9

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Firestorm - Unregistered

March 17, 2013 9:26 AM

Common guys, don't get too upset. Last year in Melbourne managed to score 2 points but this happened because of too many retirements and problems that many teams faced. Know they are a lot more reliable. At least Toro Rosso looked faster than Williams and maybe Sauber on race pace as well. Toro Rosso looks better placed to challenge Force India and getting their much desired 6th place in the constructors at the end of the year. But I must say that I doubt that the midfiled teams will impress as much as last year. The top teams looks such solid and reliable.

Nanbawan - Unregistered

March 17, 2013 10:34 PM

I think the Williams and possibly the Sauber may have more aero potential and don't suit Melbourne, they should be stronger on more conventional tracks and conditions.



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