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Bourdais: Five drivers in STR frame, not three.

Sébastien Bourdais has revealed that there are five drivers, not just three, under consideration for the two available Formula 1 seats at Scuderia Toro Rosso next year – as his manager admits that the Frenchman is undergoing 'a rather unpleasant period'.

Bourdais, namesake and GP2 Series race-winner Sébastien Buemi and out-of-work Super Aguri refugee Takuma Sato all tried out for STR during the first major group test of the winter around Barcelona's Circuit de Catalunya this week. Though the former wound up the quickest of the three despite having completed by some margin the fewest laps, he stressed that his performance is no guarantee of a stay of execution at the Red Bull 'junior' concern in 2009.

"Obviously you have to show that you are the one who deserves to be there and obviously I need to show again that I am quick enough and deserve to be there," the 29-year-old – voted seventh in Crash.net readers' list of top ten drivers of the season [see separate story –click here] told the official Formula 1 website, "but that's not going to be enough.

"As long as they don't have the money to run the team in a proper way they won't be able to say [who they want], because it doesn't matter whether you have talented drivers at the wheel of the car if you can't run the car.

"There were three drivers in Barcelona, but Rubens [Barrichello] is on the list and Bruno [Senna] as well – if he doesn't get picked up by Honda – so anybody who has got talent and money today is a potential candidate."

Though Bourdais is undoubtedly talented – as his record-breaking four consecutive Champ Car crowns across the Pond attest to, as did his vastly improved form over the second half of his maiden F1 campaign in 2008 – he is struggling considerably more on the financial side, with both Sato and Buemi believed to be able to bring funding to the small, private Faenza-based outfit that the present incumbent cannot hope to match.

Reflecting on his rookie season in the top flight – one that had initially looked set to destroy his excellent reputation as he struggled to get a handle on the Monaco-introduced STR3 – the man from Le Mans admitted that it had been a big let-down, even if six top ten qualifying showings from the last seven grands prix and his increasingly gritty and impressive race performances towards the end proved that he deserves a second go in 2009.

"It was quite disappointing as far as I am concerned," he mused, "because obviously we had a good beginning with the STR2, where I was fairly close to Sebastian Vettel, and then with the STR3 it became a lot harder because I was facing balance issues which we really could not solve.

"We had one happy driver and one fairly unhappy driver. The time difference was getting very big sometimes, and you really don't look good and can't really be satisfied with that.



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Sebastien Bourdais (FRA), Toro Rosso STRO3, Belgian F1 Grand Prix, Spa Francorchamps, 5-7th, September, 2008
Kimi Raikkonen tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
Lewis Hamilton tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
Daniel Ricciardo tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
Kimi Raikkonen tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Pirelli 2017 tyre test [Credit: Pirelli]
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, Start of the race, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB12 and Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H and Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB12
27.11.2016 - Race, Max Verstappen (NED) Red Bull Racing RB12 leads Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid
27.11.2016 - Race,Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H  leads Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB12

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Fernando Laaff - Unregistered

November 23, 2008 12:06 PM

From day to day I become more disappointed on the performance STR management shows off these days! I think we don''t have to discuss about sebastiens driving skills anyway - his potential should be obvious to everyone though he had a rather "poor" season. But looking at the comments he makes and the team radios in FP, it''s convincing me more and more that he''s a unique guy in the paddock who analyses his situation as rationally as noone else would ever do! What else could u wish for?! Instead of complaining he always finds the strenght to move him and his team forward... I fear the day when STR announces its lineup...

Dany Brown

November 23, 2008 2:20 PM

They should keep Bourdais. Simple as that. And by saying so i state what I want to see happen, i don't try to think i know better than the one who will actually make the decision. What is correct and what is not is a rather subjective concept after all, depending on opinions. :)



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