Tost calls for winter F1 testing in the Gulf

Franz Tost Toro Rosso

Franz Tost

Toro Rosso team boss Franz Tost has called on Formula 1 to abandon winter testing in Europe, saying he would prefer the pre-season runs to be staged in “Abu Dhabi or Bahraini – as long as the track is licensed by the FIA”.

Also capable of hosting F1 testing are Dubai Autodrome and Losail Circuit in Qatar.

“At least we would have better weather,” Tost is quoted by Speed Week.

He said the recent winter running in Jerez and Barcelona, Spain, was “absolutely useless”, due to the cold and wet weather.

“None of the (collected) data can be used for the (racing) season,” said Tost. “This year, only two days at best were reasonably acceptable.”

Traditionally, Formula 1 teams have ruled out returning to non-European testing on the basis of cost, but Tost insisted that the better weather “would be worth it”.

Meanwhile, Speed Week said Tost hinted that Antonio Felix da Costa – the latest cream of Red Bull’s junior driver programme – could get some Friday morning running later in 2013.