Toro Rosso drivers “don’t crash enough”

Giorgio Ascanelli

Giorgio Ascanelli

Jun.25 (Grand Prix 247) This season, Toro Rosso drivers have repeatedly said that they need to improve their qualifying performance to stand a chance of doing well in the races. According to the Faenza based team’s technical director Giorgio Ascanelli, “It’s because they don’t crash enough!”

Ascanelli’s one-liner hides a more considered answer to the question, “Although I fully understand and support the need for cost cutting in Formula 1, the current rules do not favour young and inexperienced drivers.”

The ban on using a spare car at the races and the fact in-season testing is forbidden means track time is severely limited. Ascanelli explains, “I can fully understand our drivers’ main concern is to keep the car on track, as spending as much time as possible behind the wheel is the best way to gain experience: indeed of this year’s twenty four drivers, Jaime tops the table for having completed the most race laps. However, the only way for a driver to find his limit, is to go over it sometimes.”

And adds, “In addition, while the approach to driving the car in free practice and the race is similar, that required for qualifying is very different, with the more experienced drivers having all sorts of little tricks up their sleeve, in terms of riding kerbs and using different lines. But going over the limit at a race weekend can be too costly. The result is that our drivers nearly always have a much more competitive pace during the races than on Friday and Saturday, which is why their technical feedback on Sunday evening is so much more specific and relevant. Given that, in order to score points, you first have to finish the race, I cannot fault their approach and I believe the qualifying speed will come as they gain experience.”

  • Bec

    A curious thing to say :D

  • Marco

    Ascanelli trying to be too clever. The minute the kids start putting it in the wall they will be out the door no doubt. Makes a good point about the lack of testing but shoots himself in the foot with the delivery.