Franz Tost felt the Belgian Grand Prix was going to be tough for his Scuderia Toro Rosso team and he was proved correct, although he was happy to see Carlos Sainz Jr secure a well-earned point for the team.
The Team Principal of the Faenza-based team had seen Sainz qualify outside the top ten at Spa-Francorchamps, while team-mate Daniil Kvyat started nineteenth on the grid following an engine change, but both drivers moved forward on Sunday afternoon.
Sainz drove strongly to finish tenth, while Kvyat advanced seven places to finish twelfth, and Tost said both drivers extracted the maximum from their cars, although he felt the results could have been slightly better but for the timing of the safety car.
“Spa was a difficult weekend for us,” said Tost. “We expected it not to be easy and, unfortunately, that was the case, especially in Qualifying.
“We were only able to start from the mid-field with Carlos. Daniil, already from FP1, faced problems which we could not fix, so in the end we had to change the complete PU, which resulted in a grid position penalty.
“After the start, both cars were in traffic going into the first corner and they lost some positions. Nevertheless, Carlos could catch-up and finish the race in tenth position, scoring a point.
“I think this was the maximum he could extract from the car for today. He did a very strong first stint, where he managed the Ultrasoft tyres quite in a special way, which helped him to extend the stint.
“Regarding Daniil, he was able to gain some positions during the race and he finished twelfth. I think the Safety Car didn’t help us strategy wise, because of our tyre choice – without it, we could’ve had a bigger advantage at the end of the race.
“We now hope that we can score more points in Monza next week in order to protect our position in the Constructors’ Championship.”