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Formula 1

Toro Rosso left to rue mistakes in tyre strategy during wet qualifying session

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Toro Rosso will start the Malaysian Grand Prix 13th and 14th tomorrow, with Sebastian Buemi getting the better of his less experienced teammate Jaime Alguersuari.

“Malaysian rain is like English tea: it comes around five and it's the same temperature,” was the profound and witty comment from Giorgio Ascanelli. He explained that the team could have done better, but for some basic errors. “Seriously though, we got our tactics right in going out immediately in Q1. But in Q2, if we had more confidence in the forecast, we should have gone out earlier on Intermediates, but we thought it was too risky.

“We called Sebastien in at the right minute, but he did not come in and we missed the best slot. Jaime was very lucky not to run out of fuel in Q1 as he stayed out for one lap too long and in Q2, I would say he is pretty much where we would have expected. Therefore, something of a missed opportunity today.”

Buemi was clearly frustrated after his qualifying attempt. “I'm angry because I did not make the most of Q2. But there's nothing I can do about it and so we will have to tackle the race from where we are. I started Q2 on full wets because we felt the conditions demanded it, but I stayed on track too long and then, after I came in and switched to the Intermediates, it was too late because the rain had started to get stronger again.”

Jaime Alguersuari explained that tyre choices were the key factor in qualifying around the wet Sepang circuit, but notes that there will be some big name drivers behind on the grid tomorrow. “When you look at what happened to some of the quicker guys, I would say this qualifying result is reasonably okay for me. However, maybe if I had come in earlier in Q2 to switch from full wets to intermediates, then maybe I could have had a chance of seeing Q3. If the conditions are similar to this tomorrow and I believe that is the forecast, then you never know what could happen, although personally I would prefer a dry race.”

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