Toro Rosso to keep Sebastien Buemi and Jaime Alguersuari for 2011 (Updated)

Sebastien Buemi, Toro Rosso, Silverstone, 2010

Toro Rosso team principal Franz Tost expects to keep Sebastien Buemi and Jaime Alguersuari as his drivers for 2011.

Tost said:

I believe our drivers will be well prepared for 2011, which is why they are both confirmed for next year. It is also logical, because one key role of Scuderia Toro Rosso is to bring on young drivers from the Red Bull Young Driver programme and at the ages of 21 and 20 respectively, both Seb and Jaime certainly still meet the right criteria.

Our drivers still lack F1 experience compared to the majority of their colleagues. Therefore, as they get more track time with every race, I expect to see an improvement in the final half of the season. This is particularly relevant to Alguersuari, because from Hungary onwards, he will be able to rely on the knowledge he picked up after making his debut there in 2009, knowing all the remaining tracks, with the exception of Korea.

It is not just a case of their driving getting better, because it is also true that their understanding and engineering feedback improves, which is vital if we are to get the most out of our package.
Franz Tost

He confirmed he team has new developments coming for its car in the next two races but has also begun work on its 2011 challenger:

In terms of the car itself, we are introducing some updates over these next two races, starting with a new front wing in Hockenheim, then a new diffuser in Hungary. Other updates are in the pipeline and I am therefore convinced that car performance will improve, starting with next weekend.

The design group has been split, with part of it already working on the 2011 car, including starting wind tunnel work, which is a first, given that our Bicester wind tunnel was not fully validated this time last year and therefore was not able to contribute much to the basic design of the 2010 car.

Another part of the design group is still working on developing new specifications for this year?s car. Of course, our resources are limited when compared to the teams ahead of us in the championship, but we have no plans to increase our manpower, as the F1 regulations are moving towards capping the size of the workforce in the future and while our size might be a disadvantage at the moment, it could become a positive factor in the future.

I expect a combination of car updates and improved performance from the drivers and indeed the whole team to bring us more points in what remains of the season.

Why could we not do this earlier? It?s quite simply a matter of resources, in that we are a small team and even in this high-tech age, without the people to generate and drive the technology forward, not just in terms of production but also design and development, you cannot improve.

We have not fixed a cut-off date when development of the STR5 will stop and, while working on the STR6, if we come up with some solutions that we feel could benefit this year?s car and we have the resources and capacity to produce new parts, then we will introduce them on STR5. It would also mean we are effectively testing for 2011 this season.
Franz Tost

Toro Rosso are ninth in the constructors’ championship at the moment but Tost believes they should be higher by the end of the year:

I have always said our target is to finish eighth in the Constructors? classification. We are working very hard towards achieving this goal, even if our closest rivals at Williams and Sauber are doing a good job. Therefore it will not be easy.
Franz Tost

Update: Buemi has apparently denied the deal, telling Swiss newspaper Blick “I have not signed yet. Also, there are some details that are missing, so the transfer market still open.”

Read more: 2011 F1 drivers and teams

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34 comments on Toro Rosso to keep Sebastien Buemi and Jaime Alguersuari for 2011 (Updated)

  1. Both these guys will want to impress to possibly be in contention for a Red Bull seat come 2012

    • Calum said on 15th July 2010, 16:11

      Buemi just needs to keep doing what he has been, because Renault have expressed an interest for him next year, as well as RBR once Mark leaves.

      • US_Peter (@us_peter) said on 15th July 2010, 19:02

        Both RBR and Renault are also interested in Räikkönen as well. Buemi will be hoping that Räikkönen enjoys himself enough in WRC to stay there.

        • steph said on 15th July 2010, 19:53

          Kimi seems set to stay in the WRC for another year. Great another year of rumours. Thanks Kimi.

          • wasiF1 (@wasif1) said on 16th July 2010, 3:12

            Kimi’s chance of coming in F1 is slim, his last chance is Renault but I don’t think he will race there.

            Both Sebastien Buemi and Jaime Alguersuari will be fighting to death to get the seat in the Red Bull for 2012 once Webber leaves it, it will be fun to watch both of them battle until then.

    • miguelF1O (@) said on 17th July 2010, 1:24

      with that car having so bad results i dont remeber seeing toro rosso behind red bull when vettel was there the toro rosso team finished 2008 higher than red bull

  2. Macca (@macca) said on 15th July 2010, 16:14

    I can’t believe there only aiming for 8th. That means they think they can only beat Sauber.

    To be fair, thats proberbly realistic but a little bit negative.

  3. Kate said on 15th July 2010, 16:17

    It seem Red Bull have got a backlog of Red Bull juniors in the pipeline because the main team and now STR have been staying static. It makes me wonder how sustainable the whole junior team concept is in the long term.

    I guess Ricciardo and Hartley, if they get kept on, either do another season of WSbR or go to GP2, but sooner or later they are going to have to either make the jump to F1 or go and do something else, but there are even more drivers coming through behind them. Red Bull didn’t have this problem before because Tost was firing drivers every 6 months or so, it was like a revolving door. Now it seems like their current crop are almost “too good” and its tough to know what to do with them all.

    • Macca (@macca) said on 15th July 2010, 16:40

      I think this problem will be eased in 2012 with the likly retirment of Mark from Red Bull and if Jaime doesn’t get the results next season then he will be gone also.

      • Kate said on 15th July 2010, 17:03

        True, James Allen wrote in the comments section of his website that he is “fairly sure” Webber is planning to retire at the end of 2011 and I think he may be right.

        You would imagine though that Ricciardo probably fancied his chances for a Toro Rosso cockpit for 2011. Though more time in the feeder series will probably give him a better grounding than most of the Red Bull juniors who get thrown in half-baked. I think the relative staticness at Red Bull at the moment could cost Hartley though.

    • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 15th July 2010, 23:25

      Perhaps but frankly they’d do better to give more of them some time in GP2 before rushing them into F1.

      Ricciardo looks promising but there’s no need to stick him in F1 next year, give him some time in GP2 to get some experience on more of the F1 tracks first.

      • Macca (@macca) said on 16th July 2010, 6:57

        If they are serious about there junior racing program they would have Ricciardo and Hartley driving on for Red Bull and Torro Rosso on Friday mornings and switching them btween the two teams at each grand prix.

  4. Mike "the bike" Schumacher said on 15th July 2010, 18:08

    Torro rosso have been boring ever since vettel left.

    • miguelF1O (@) said on 17th July 2010, 1:25

      it wasnt just because of vettel but it shows how poor are both toro rosso drivers handling an amazing car

  5. PJA said on 15th July 2010, 18:28

    Given Toro Rosso’s history with driver changes I was quite surprised that they have made this announcement so soon, I didn’t expect them to confirm their driver line-up until the after the season had finished.

    On their performances so far I think it would be harsh to drop either of the drivers.

    Williams and Sauber seem to have upped their performance lately so I doubt Toro Rosso will be able to beat them, but one good result especially at the lower end of the Constructors Championship could make all the difference.

  6. Electrolite said on 15th July 2010, 19:20

    I’m glad, I quite like these two. I think we can see Buemi at Renault in the future however, yes, and Alguersuari should hopefully finish a little higher on these more familiar tracks to come.

  7. Subaru_STi said on 16th July 2010, 1:57

    i think Ricciardo deserves the Red Bull seat before a season or two in the Torro Rosso replacing Beumi who should try take Petrovs seat, iv seen him race alot and im already a big fan, dare i say he is even more agressive than Hamilton, if i was Torro Rosso i would give him a seat, i garantee he could blow away the likes of Hulkenburg or Petrov on his first outing.

  8. wasiF1 (@wasif1) said on 16th July 2010, 3:14

    So far 10 drivers out of 24 have been confirmed for 2011 & mainly they are all from the big teams I think the drivers market at the end of the year won’t be too much fun this season.

  9. Buemi has not yet signed. He told Blick.ch:

    “I have not yet signed. In addition, there are some missing details, so also the transfer market is still open. ”

    Interesting…

  10. John Phillips said on 16th July 2010, 9:43

    But I thought the whole point of Toro Rosso was to try out young drivers (and engineers and mechanics and so on)? Surely keeping the same drivers for 2 and 3 years respectively is going against everything STR initially stood for?

  11. the-muffin-man said on 16th July 2010, 10:04

    Don’t forget that the Toro Rosso team is still up for sale, so Red Bulls commitment to the team is only temporary….

    Keeping these two probably make the team more attractive to a buyer as they’re more likely to score consistent points (and get more TV money for the team!) than two rookies who chuck the car into the wall every session!

  12. SoLiDG (@solidg) said on 16th July 2010, 12:14

    I think the article is about str wanting to keep their drivers. It doesn’t really say it’s signed. But they want to keep them.

  13. Flippy PK said on 19th July 2010, 18:51

    I love silly season! I think Buemi will stay at STR; because Marko is pushing to get rid of Webber and that would be very lucrative for Buemi. As for Renault, I think Kobayashi will replace Petrov because he knows Bouiller from DAMS and is the best rookie this year. I honestly don’t see Buemi at Renault in 2011.

  14. Speed Damon said on 20th July 2010, 11:48

    Latest News about this Buemi deal is that he WILL stay with Toro Rosso next year. For details see http://www.gpupdate.net/en/f1-news/239205/i-m-staying-at-toro-rosso-buemi-confirms/. Alguersuari to stay at Toro Rosso too.

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