Toro Rosso enjoyed a strong qualifying session at Barcelona today, despite neither car ultimately managing to get through to the top ten shoot out.
Daniel Ricciardo and Jean Eric-Vergne will line up eleventh and twelfth ahead of tomorrow’s Grand Prix, with both drivers hopeful of scoring some points in their on-going battle with Force India.
Ricciardo, who got the better of his team mate, said: “I was pleased with the way the session went overall, particularly Q2 and I think we got the most we could out of the car. While yesterday was a good day for us, this morning was nowhere near as positive, as I had problems with the balance on the car. So we had to play catch-up and this afternoon we managed to get it right.”
“I was happy with my lap in Q2, even though you can’t help feeling a little bit disappointed to miss out on Q3 by such a small margin. But we are close and we can have a good race tomorrow. We have made progress and we are once again looking as competitive as we did in China.”
Meanwhile, Vergne was equally positive.
“We have made a good step forward which means we start the European part of the season with a stronger car, so that anything is possible tomorrow. There are a lot of positives to take from this afternoon, starting with the fact my car’s set-up will be even better suited to race conditions than to qualifying,”
“Twelfth is a good place to start and points should be on the agenda tomorrow. The team has done a fantastic job to bring some updates that have worked well, but we still need to do a bit more to be genuine contenders for Q3, but so far it has been a good weekend and I am feeling very confident for tomorrow,” he added.
“It is satisfying that we have made a good step and we are still learning about the package. In our favour for tomorrow is the fact that, being just outside Q3, we can choose our own tyre strategy for the start and we are ahead of all the other cars in that same situation, while we have also saved a new set of Medium tyres. We don’t know quite what to expect from the tyres in the race, as they both seem to be working well as a race tyre,” technical director James Key concluded.