Toro Rosso Plagued by First-Stint Problems

Toro Rosso rookie driver Carlos Sainz Jr has voiced his concerns publicly about his team’s inability to get his car to perform well at the start of races.

It’s already customary for the STR10 to look strong during practice sessions and even through qualifying. However, everything changes when the car gets a full tank of fuel and the race gets under way.

Sainz said that their weakness is the first stint – meaning the time in which the car is at its heaviest.

“I don’t know why. It’s a shame because as soon as you’re done with high fuel, you put on another tyre and you have 70 to 80 kilograms of fuel, suddenly the car starts behaving normally and we have very decent pace. The only bit we struggle with is the first stint. FP1, FP2, FP3 and qualifying, we are always strong.”

Sainz also stated that for him, it’s a personal feeling that he has about the car. “It’s about how comfortable I am with the car. I know in qualifying I can do whatever I want, turning the car wherever I want because I have the rear support, I have the confidence. But with 100 kilograms I don’t know if I’m going to oversteer on entry, understeer on mid.”

Toro Rosso definitely have to figure this one out. It may just be the fact that the young rookie driver doesn’t have enough F1 racing experience, but the fact that he feels he has to change his approach completely during the race, does raise real concerns.

If things do change for the better, we might start seeing Toro Rosso taking the fight to Force India and Red Bull during the next couple of races.

Story references: autosport


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