Team principal Franz Tost believes Toro Rosso can hold their own at the front of the midfield in the 2018 Formula 1 season.
At the unveiling of the team’s new car, the STR13, Tost spoke about Toro Rosso’s new partnership with engine provider Honda and the positive impact it has had in the off-season.
Speaking at the pre-season testing at the Circuit de Catalunya, Tost told F1.com: “The power unit is working quite well and I am convinced Honda has the capacity and the know-how to develop the engine... Honda have made a lot of progress in the last months on the reliability side as well as the performance side.”
Subscribe to The Week
Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.
When asked about the team’s targets this season, he said that Toro Rosso should be in with a chance of a spot behind F1’s big three: Mercedes, Red Bull and Ferrari.
Tost added: “I said once in an interview that the first three places are gone this year because there is Red Bull, Mercedes and so on. But from fourth place on, though, there’s a lot to fight for.” The real fight, he explained, would be happening in midfield, with Toro Rosso facing hot competition from teams such as Force India, Williams, McLaren and Renault.
“I have to get a clearer picture of our performance here [at testing] and the first two or three races, but the target for Toro Rosso is to be in front of the midfield and this is around fifth place,” he said.
In pictures: Toro Rosso STR13
Create an account with the same email registered to your subscription to unlock access.