Two years in the making, the STR9 was revealed today at the Jerez de la Frontera circuit in southern Spain, when drivers Jean-Eric Vergne and teenager Daniil Kvyat whipped the sheets off Scuderia Toro Rosso’s challenger for the 2014 Formula 1 World Championship, in the Jerez pit lane, at an event organised by long time sponsor CEPSA.
Under the technical directorship of James Key, Chief Designer Luca Furbatto and his team in Faenza, along with the wind tunnel team in Bicester, have come up with their interpretation of the radical technical regulation changes introduced for this year.
The STR 9 is the first Scuderia Toro Rosso car to be powered by Renault. The car will make its official track debut tomorrow, with France’s Jean-Eric Vergne at the wheel. Daniil Kvyat will take over driving duties on Wednesday.
Franz Tost: “In 2012, we began a concept study for STR9, the earliest we have ever started a new car project, As time went by, more and more of our staff were involved in the project, as we invested a lot of effort and resources, both technical and financial into the design of the new car.”
“In 2014 the key parameters for success will be finding the best balance between deploying the power of the engine and managing the 100 kg fuel limit per race, the use of the two energy recovery systems and, just as in the past, the tyres. Apart from the new rules, at Toro Rosso we have also had to adapt to a new engine partner and we are looking forward to working with Renault.”
“One final new element for us is on the driver side, as Daniil Kvyat joins us to race alongside Jean-Eric Vergne. Both are very talented and we expect good things from them.”
“With all these changes, some that affect everyone, others that are specific to Toro Rosso, it is really difficult to set targets or make predictions. However, it is clear we have to improve our performance and make a step forward.”
Daniil Kvyat: “I am very excited that I am about to start my first season in Formula 1. It will be a year of discovering many new things, which I expect will be very interesting. I can’t wait to actually start the driving part, the best part of my job.”
“Six days of winter testing is not a lot and I will have to see how quickly I get used to the new car, which wasn’t a big issue when I drove the 2013 car. Being a rookie means there’s a steep learning curve, but the bright side of this year’s regulation change is that all the drivers will be getting used to a new way of driving, starting from zero.”
“Anyway, I have always liked a big challenge. Physically, I feel ready after a good winter training programme, concentrating a bit on my neck muscles. The team hasn’t set me any specific targets, so its just a case of getting on top of my game as quickly as possible.”
Jean-Eric Vergne: “This will be my third season in F1 and I definitely feel better prepared than ever before. From what I have seen in the factory, the same applies to the team. Now we must make the most of winter testing and work hard to ensure that all our efforts pay off.”
“I am confident we have what we need to do well. From a driver’s point of view, we will have a lot of new elements to understand and changes that will require us to adapt as quickly as possible. That will be one of the tasks for winter tests, so that we can make the most of the package available right from the first race.”
“We will have to adopt a different style of driving, especially in the races, with this new Power Unit combined with the need to manage fuel, while the changes to the rule regarding levels of downforce will make the cars feel different, offering less grip, which will also take some getting used to. It’s going to be a fascinating start to the year.” (GP247)