Italian Grand Prix Practice – Scuderia Toro Rosso

Jaime Alguersuari (STR6-02)
First Practice Session
Best lap 1:26.696, pos. 10th, 15 laps
Second Practice Session
Best lap 1:25.758, pos. 14th, 29 laps
“I am very happy to be back racing at Monza which is a great track, with plenty of high speed sections and heavy braking to make it exciting. In both sessions today, I got a good feeling from the car and I think we are continuing to show good form, with some improvement when running in qualifying trim. The whole team did a good job today and there is more potential to come out of the car tomorrow and on Sunday. If we continue to work well through the weekend, I think we can be fighting on level terms with Force India and Sauber again on Sunday. We experienced the two DRS zones for the first time today and you can see from comparing the top speeds with and without the system, that it makes a huge difference to top speed, so it will be the key to overtaking in the race, although it will be less important in qualifying. There is quite a difference between the two Pirelli compounds, while degradation is not that bad and I think we can get more out of the Softs tomorrow.”

Sebastien Buemi (STR6-03)
First Practice Session
Best lap 1:27.433, pos. 17th, 25 laps
Second Practice Session
Best lap 1:28.347, pos. 17th, 5 laps
“This morning went well, as we tried out various things on the car to see how it felt around Monza, so overall it was a positive session. However, the afternoon was less successful as I only managed a handful of laps. I made a mistake and hit the wall, so I am sorry for giving the team a lot of work now to repair the damage. But, as they say, tomorrow is another day and this evening I will be working hard with the engineers to see what we can do for the rest of the weekend. In terms of tyres, not much to say and I only ran with the Prime so far. The DRS worked well and running the car in the Monza-specific low downforce configuration was interesting and enjoyable.”

Laurent Mekies (Chief Engineer):
“Monza free practice is different compared to the other tracks, in that we have done very track-specific work today, to deal with the fact this is where we run the lowest downforce of the entire year. For everyone, this means running different wings, front and rear, so the first job is to see if they perform as expected. We did that and then worked on finding the right compromise between having good speed down the long straights and having sufficient downforce for the corners. We now have plenty of data to study to find the best solution for tomorrow and the rest of the weekend. We also evaluated different set-ups on both cars and even though we lost track time with Sebastien in the afternoon, we will be able to apply what we learn from Jaime’s data to Seb’s car for tomorrow. There do not appear to be any particular issues with the tyres, although our only long run so far was done on the Options this afternoon. From what we have seen today, it should be an interesting race on Sunday with the possibility of more than one strategy being applied.”