Berger backs Toro Rosso driver decision

Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) and Jean-Eric Vergne

Daniel Ricciardo and Jean-Eric Vergne

Dec.28 (GMM) Toro Rosso was “absolutely right” to axe its entire driver lineup ahead of the 2012 Formula 1 season claims the team’s former co-owner and boss Gerhard Berger.

Faenza based Toro Rosso’s current owner Red Bull has ousted Jaime Alguersuari and Sebastien Buemi in favour of the fresher Daniel Ricciardo and Jean-Eric Vergne.

“I think it’s correct, although it is very hard,” ten-time grand prix winner Berger told Austrian television ORF.

“For Red Bull and Toro Rosso, it’s about preparing drivers – ideally from the Red Bull pool – to find someone who can eventually succeed Mark Webber, or Sebastian Vettel when he moves on,” said the Austrian.

Berger said Alguersuari and Buemi did not fit the bill.

“The demand to be at Red Bull is the highest of all, of course, and these two are average at the most,” he said.

“So these two were good for Toro Rosso but not for Red Bull Racing. It was right (for Red Bull) to look elsewhere for what they want,” said Berger.

Berger admitted he will be keeping a particular eye on French rookie Vergne in 2012.

“I’ve heard a lot of good about him — maybe he’s a new Sebastian Vettel. The only way to find out is to try him,” he said.

And his teammate, Australian Daniel Ricciardo, admitted he will be looking to emulate Vergne’s aggression.

“Maybe I can learn from him, at least in the junior categories that’s been his style,” Ricciardo is quoted by AAP news agency.