Toro Rosso ventures into the unknown as they send their containers for back-to-back Formula 1 testing in Bahrain where Daniil Kvyat will drive the STR9 on the first and third days, with Jean-Eric Vergne at the wheel for days two and four.
Before departing to the island kingdom the team said, “How do we expect to get on at the tests? Clearly, after the first four days in Jerez, that is a complete mystery.”
Renault powered teams were plagued with problems at the first in Jerez, but little effort has been spared to remedy the shortcomings that afflicted the teams.
“Everyone in Faenza, Bicester and Viry, the latter being home to our Power Unit supplier, has been working flat out,” revealed the Red Bull owned team.
Traditionally Formula 1 pre-season testing has taken place in Europe during January and February, but this year Bahrain with its milder climate will host the final two tests, the first of which starts on 19 February and runs for four days, followed by the second test, starting 27 February.
However it must be noted that this time of the year in the Gulf sandstorms, strong winds and even torrential rain can be common.
Toro Rosso admits, “With a 19 race calendar to accommodate, sending [team members and equipment] off testing to Bahrain is quite a logistical challenge for everyone, especially as there won’t be much time in between the end of the final test and the trip down under for the first race in Melbourne.”
“At Toro Rosso, the planning for the two Bahrain tests is as complex as it would be for a grand prix and definitely more difficult to organise than a short hop down to Jerez or Barcelona.”
“We will be sending 25 tonnes of equipment to Sakhir with nearly all of it then moving straight down to Australia, where it will find a further three tonnes of material joining it directly from Italy. The car that will be used over a total of eight days testing in Bahrain, will return to Italy before heading down to the Antipodes.”
“In the case of a five day gap between two European tests, the bulk of the team personnel would return home to Faenza in between, but with the longer distance involved flying to Manama, the vast majority of our crew will stay out there, but this won’t be a beach holiday by any means, as there is bound to be plenty of work to do in terms of car preparation.”
“The fact that the venue remains the same makes life slightly easier as the garage and equipment can all stay as it is,” added the team. (GP247)
Subbed by AJN.