Looking Forward: Toro Rosso

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Team: Scuderia Toro Rosso
Drivers: Vitantonio Liuzzi (Car No. 18), Scott Speed (Car No. 19)
Chassis: STR2
Engine: Ferrari V8 056
Official Partners: Hangar 7, Renault, Rauch, Quehenberger, Bridgestone, Metro, Magneti Marelli
Home Base: Faenza, Italy

Key Staff
  • Team Co-Owner: Gerhard Berger
  • Team Principal: Franz Tost
  • Technical Director: Alex Hitzinger
  • General Manager: Gianfranco Fantuzzi
  • Third/Test Driver: N/A

2006 Rear View Mirror
Drivers: Vitantonio Liuzzi and Scott Speed
Points: 19th (Liuzzi), N/A (Speed); Ninth in Constructor’s Championship
Best Overall Race Finish: Eighth by Liuzzi at the United States Grand Prix

Analysis
One of three new teams last year, Scuderia Toro Rosso had a decent overall debut season in 2006.

Not only did they score a point when Vitantonio Liuzzi finished eighth at the U.S. Grand Prix, the only new team to do so, but they were constantly in position to earn points towards the end of races – finishing ninth or 10th six times last season.

However, those results did not come without some controversy. Last year, Scuderia Toro Rosso used Cosworth restricted V10 engines – not V8 engines like the rest of the teams on the grid. Midland F1 (now Spyker) and Super Aguri, the other rookie teams, insisted that was not fair – leading to a controversy filled season.

In 2007, no such engine problems will exist as Toro Rosso switched to Ferrari V8 engines. Yet there is another controversy brewing, and this one may create major headaches this season.

Both Toro Rosso and Super Aguri are basically sister organizations of Red Bull and Honda respectively. As such, competitors claim that both teams are using cars designed by their higher level partners, a clear violation of Formula One rules.

Several teams are threatening legal action over these "customer cars," which could mean that Toro Rosso’s 2007 results are overshadowed by court proceedings.

Prediction
Assuming that Toro Rosso does not have to deal with any F1 rules violations, 2007 still does not offer much positive news for the Italy based outfit.

It is clear that there are problems within the ranks of the team - why else would it take so long to announce the full driver lineup? Look for possible changes in the near future.

With that said, will either Liuzzi or Scott Speed score points this season? Possibly. But more than a few is very doubtful, so expect nothing more than bottom of the standings in both the drivers and constructor’s championships.

Race Center

Grand Prix of Brazil

@ Sao Paulo, Brazil
Sunday, November 24, 2013

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