Crash.Net F1 News
Toro Rosso delighted with best result of 2011
16 October 2011
Everyone at Toro Rossi was thrilled by the strongest race day performance yet from the "junior" Red Bull team at the Korean Grand Prix.
"Seventh and ninth place is by far our best result of the season," said team principal Franz Tost. "It's a superb result for Toro Rosso to be the first team on the results sheet behind the three top teams in this year's championship. He added that "it was also the fruit of strong performances from both our drivers."
Arguably the star of the Toro Rosso show was Jaime Alguersuari, who finished in seventh position after managing to pass Nico Rosberg on the final lap following a long battle with the Mercedes.
"The car had fantastic straight line speed which is how I managed to pass Nico on the final lap," Alguersuari explained. "I struggled a bit in sector 2 compared to him which is why I saved all the KERS for after the first corner, in order to be close enough to activate the DRS. I ended up using all the KERS and DRS and it finally paid off right at the end.
"I must say I did not think I could do it, I did not expect it, but I gave it one last effort at the end I was able to get past, partly helped by the fact he made a small mistake on that lap."
Alguersuari said that the rest had come down to great pit stops and not having to worry about tyre degradation on their selected two-stop strategy. "That is how we managed to produce this fantastic result. I am very happy for the team who have worked so hard, especially the mechanics fitting all these new parts."
Tost congratulated the young driver's "aggressive passing manoeuvres", and also praised Alguersuari's team mate Sebastien Buemi for his "fighting spirit" during the afternoon.
Buemi said that he too was also "extremely pleased with my race." He recovered after losing four places in the first corner of the race after being hit, and then had to work to gain positions out on the track which included a prolonged battle with the two Force India cars. "The car was very competitive with good top speed down the straight," he said, adding: "The pit stops also went very well."
Buemi added that he was looking forward to India, particularly because it seemed that Toro Rosso were now a match for Sauber in their battle for championship positions. "We are now only a few points off Sauber in the championship and if we continue to work hard, I think we can realistically try and get ahead of them in the remaining races," he said.
Alguersuari agreed: "We are closer to Sauber now and with three races remaining, I think we have a chance of passing them, as long as we continue to perform like this, finishing in the top ten."