Formula 1

Toro Rosso Impresses In Australia With First Q3 Appearance Since 2009

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Toro Rosso made an impressive start to the new season in Australia as Sebastien Buemi made it through to Q3 for their first time since 2009.

The Swiss driver qualified in tenth place at Albert Park ahead of big budget Mercedes GP and midfield rivals Force India with teammate Jaime Alguersuari in 12th.

Buemi feels that he got the most out of the car and is delighted to be among the top ten quickest cars on the circuit.

He said: “I am very happy to be back in Q3, as we had not been there since 2009. Let's hope we can continue to do well in the race tomorrow and from what we have seen of our pace in free practice, I think that should be possible.”

“I could not have hoped for a better start to the season, being among the ten fastest cars on the grid. My quick lap was good and I don't think I could have done any better.”

Toro Rosso made the most of their rivals' poor performance as Adrian Sutil and Rubens Barrichello spun out of qualifying.

Technical boss Giorgio Ascanelli is delighted with the progress of team even if it is at the misfortune of rivals and knows there is still hard work to be done.

He revealed: “Before the session, I expected to get this result. We are just a sniff ahead of Force India, with whom I expect we will be fighting all year. However, I am not going to cry about Adrian Sutil's misfortunes.”

“When analysing the result, we have to consider that Williams had a difficult session, while Sauber is solidly ahead of us. Seb and the team did a very good job, managing the tyres, going out at the right time and generally running the session very well.”

“People have been singing the praises of our car and this is a result of some bold choices we made on the design front.”

“However, we are currently the eighth team and we will have to continue to work hard to try and stay ahead of the others.”

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Joe is covering anything to do with motorsport for The Checkered Flag and running a British GT site for the 2011 season - Find him tweeting at @JWFinnerty
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