Toro Rosso: Qualifying result is slightly disappointing

Oct.6 (Toro Rosso) Team and drivers report on their qualifying for the Japanese Grand Prix, Round 15 of the 2012 Formula One World Championship, at Suzuka,

Daniel Ricciardo (STR7-04):
Third Practice Session Best lap 1:34.023, pos. 17th, 19 laps
Qualifying Best lap: (Q1) 1:33.059, (Q2) 1:32.954, pos. 16th
“Without taking the grid position into consideration, this afternoon’s session was great fun. Driving this circuit on low fuel and with the best tyre of the weekend- a new set of Options – is very enjoyable. Today, it was really just a fight between myself and Jean-Eric in Q2 because the others were a little bit too far out in front. However, it’s not too discouraging, because on the positive side, we have definitely made progress since yesterday and if we can find another step forward for tomorrow, then hopefully we can sneak into the points again.”

Jean-Eric Vergne (STR7-03):
Third Practice Session Best lap: 1:33.722, pos. 14th, 18 laps
Qualifying Best lap: (Q1) 1:33.370, (Q2) 1:33.368, pos. 17th
“I’m not so happy with today’s qualifying as we have struggled to find the right balance on our car all weekend. For qualifying, maybe we went too far the other way in terms of set-up and when the balance is not right, you lose a lot of time in the high speed corners. But hopefully the race will be better tomorrow; it usually is. As for the incident with Senna, I was catching Glock on my flying lap and I had to slow because of that. I saw Bruno was coming very quickly and unfortunately he caught me at the chicane where there is not much room. But I knew I had to let him past and moved as much to the outside as I could, even though I knew I would not be in the best position to come out of the corner. After that, he slowed a lot and I had to pass him again on the straight, otherwise I would not have set a proper time.”

James Key (Technical Director):“Today’s qualifying result is slightly disappointing. We worked overnight to try and improve our performance in Sector 1, where we have struggled for most of the weekend, primarily with a balance issue. We worked hard on it with the drivers and made progress this morning. However, we knew we needed to do more so we took another step for this afternoon, making further set-up changes, which was a bit of gamble. It did seem better, but not enough to make a big difference. The second and third sectors of the track look much better and in general we have improved since the start of the weekend. As we have seen in the last few races, our race pace is better than in qualifying, because our drivers have done a good job of learning how to manage the tyres. Therefore, from the grid positions we secured today, we can still aspire to score points tomorrow, but it won’t be easy.”

Subbed by AJN.