Having only been called into the Toro Rosso line-up in the week leading up the Hungarian Grand Prix, Sebastien Vettel said he was pleased to get to the flag in a difficult first Formula 1 outing for the team.

Vettel, who finished eighth in the United States while deputising for the injured Robert Kubica in his only previous F1 start, went into the weekend without any prior running in the STR2 after getting the call to replace Scott Speed - meaning his first experience of the car came the opening practice session on Friday.

With the weekend effectively becoming a three day test for the youngster in the eyes of team boss Franz Tost, Vettel produced a solid drive on race day to come home in 16th place.

"It felt like a long race, but the main thing is that I finished," he said. "It was not easy, as over a race distance, the car changes a lot and you have to adapt, which is not easy when you don't know the car.

"The team did a very good job, helping me where they could. I had quite a good start. I found it quite exciting and overall, it was a good weekend, considering Friday was the first time I drove the car."

For team-mate Tonio Liuzzi however, the race would end in disappointment when mechanical woes forced him into retirement.

"My race was going okay," he reflected, "apart from the fact that our strategy choice meant that when I was stuck behind Massa, running slower with a heavier fuel load, it was costing me time.

"During the first stop, we sorted it out, changing my strategy and it could have gone better from then on as I had a good pace. Unfortunately, I had an electronic problem. For at least three laps, I was very slow down the straights and I could feel a lack of power. We tried to go ahead and to keep pushing, but it became obvious I would not be able to finish the race as I was going about three seconds a lap slower.

"We have to try and improve our reliability so that I can finish some more races before the end of the season. Maybe we should book a trip to Lourdes!"

 

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