Toro Rosso had a difficult grand prix in China today, failing to trouble the top ten and only finishing ahead of the likes of Caterham, Marussia and HRT.
Daniel Ricciardo finished the grand prix exactly where he started- 17th place – and team-mate Jean-Eric Vergne went just one place better after electing to start the race from the pit lane.
“We decided to change some elements on the car that had not worked well up to qualifying, which is why I started from pit lane, so my set-up for the race was more similar to what we had in Melbourne and Sepang,” explained Vergne.
“I did not have high hopes of doing much, starting from the back, but the important thing was to see how the car performed. It was pretty good, so I expect we will start with it like that in Bahrain and hopefully be able to have a better race result.
“Today's race had some enjoyable moments as I passed a few cars, but it was a bit short for me, as a few more laps and I think I could have got ahead of the two guys in front of me.”
Ricciardo said that the main reason he failed to make up any positions was lack of pace, and a few incidents early on in the race.
“My start off the line was okay, but I got a bit squeezed around the outside at Turn 1 and lost what I had gained earlier,” said the Australian. “Then, on the same lap, I went round some debris on the track at Turn 6 and lost another place.
“In fact, my whole first stint was not very good and we were struggling to overtake. In the second stint, it went slightly better and the last one better still, but the pace today was not good enough to deliver anything better.”
Team principal Franz Tost said that the team will be aiming to improve in Bahrain after the disappointing result today. “We have been lacking pace since the start of the weekend and therefore did not make much progress up the order, with the two cars finishing 16th and 17th,” he explained.
“Having run the two cars in different configurations to one another today, we will now analyse carefully the cable data to work on producing the best possible set-up for next weekend's race in Bahrain, where I believe we will be capable of getting a better result.”