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Toro Rosso extends contract for technical director James Key

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Scuderia Toro Rosso technical director James Key will continue with the team for the foreseeable future, following a contract extension announced on Tuesday.

Key joined the team in 2012 and has seen the Faenza-based squad solidify its role in the upper midfield, with occasional surprise finishes that have pushed the team near the top three or four teams on the grid.

“I am delighted to continue with Toro Rosso and remain part of the Red Bull family,” he said. “This is a team which I have great respect for and have thoroughly enjoyed working with for the past 5 years; now I look forwards to continuing our project into the future.

“STR is unique, facing the challenges of being spread over two countries and fulfilling the roles of both a team in its own right and an important part of the Red Bull driver program: they are challenges that the team takes in its stride and, whilst doing so, continues to grow and improve year on year.

“Most importantly, the people I have had the pleasure to work with at STR are second to none: professional, ambitious and focussed, they have all worked incredibly hard to improve the team’s performance and will continue that hard work with the same dedication and optimism in the coming years too. I would like to thank Franz Tost and Red Bull for their continued support and confidence. We have more work to do, and I look forwards to taking the next steps with Toro Rosso towards our goals.”

Team principal Franz Tost added, Formula 1 is a team sport, but one in which an individual can still make a difference. So far, in his time with us, James has proved that he can indeed make that difference, leading the technical side of the operation.

“Not only has he been adept at producing chassis-aero packages that are well regarded throughout the paddock, he has also shown the management skills necessary to get the most out of all the various departments that work together both here in Faenza and in Bicester. I am therefore delighted that James will be with us for the foreseeable future to continue this fruitful process.”

Toro Rosso reported to FIA stewards at Silverstone over unsafe car

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Scuderia Toro Rosso has been reported to the FIA stewards for attempting to enter an unsafe Formula 1 car to this weekend’s British Grand Prix at Silverstone.

In a communication issued by the FIA on Thursday afternoon after initial scrutineering, it was confirmed that the stewards would be investigating Toro Rosso after the team tried entering Carlos Sainz Jr.’s car in an “unsafe condition”.

“During initial scrutineering car number 55 was found to have a damaged wheel tether. The scrutineers made the team Scuderia Toro Rosso aware of this and asked the team to replace it,” a technical report from the FIA reads.

“The team refused to follow the instructions of the scrutineers and therefore the technical delegate checked the damaged tether himself and found that the tether was not only damaged but also several cut fibers were knotted together.

“Therefore the team was aware of the damage tether and presented the car in an unsafe condition for scrutineering.

“In my opinion, this is a breach of Article 3.3 of the 2017 Sporting Regulations and I am referring this matter to the stewards for their consideration.”

 

STR’s Kvyat, Sainz to both run last two days of first test

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After each driver’s had a day apiece in the Scuderia Toro Rosso STR12 chassis, both Daniil Kvyat and Carlos Sainz Jr. will split time and run both days for the rest of this week’s first Formula 1 test of the year at the Circuit de Catalunya-Barcelona.

Sainz ran 51 laps on Monday while Kvyat completed 68 today thus far, to give Toro Rosso 119 laps completed thus far this test.

Kvyat will run the morning stints each of the next two days with Sainz taking over in the afternoon.

Scuderia Toro Rosso set for car launch on February 26

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Scuderia Toro Rosso has announced the launch date of its STR12 chassis, a day ahead of the Barcelona preseason test.

The team confirmed the February 26 launch, which will be at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya pit lane in front of the team’s garage at 4:30 p.m. local time.

Drivers Daniil Kvyat, Carlos Sainz Jr., Team Principal Franz Tost, Technical Director James Key and Deputy Technical Director Ben Waterhouse will be on hand.

Toro Rosso’s is the latest launch announcement to date, following a handful of others that are set to be revealed a few days earlier. The full list of key dates for 2017 is linked here.

Toro Rosso in talks to rebadge F1 power unit for 2017

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Scuderia Toro Rosso is in negotiations with a sponsor over a deal to rebadge its power unit for the 2017 Formula 1 season, according to team principal Franz Tost.

Toro Rosso will return to current-year Renault engines for next season after using 2015-spec Ferrari power units for 2016.

The deal sees Toro Rosso mirror the power units supplied to parent team, Red Bull, who rebadged the engines as TAG Heuer in 2016 following a deal with the Swiss watch company.

Toro Rosso could now be set to strike a similar deal, with its power unit supplier being listed as ‘to be confirmed’ on the provisional entry sheet for the 2017 season.

“We have the opportunity to find a title sponsor to rebrand our 2017 engine, as Red Bull did last year with TAG Heuer,” Tost told Italian publication La Gazzetta dello Sport.

“We are in talks and discussions with a sponsor.”

Toro Rosso enjoys links with a number of sponsors already, including cloud computing company Acronis and watch brand Casio, making both possible candidates to take over sponsorship of the engine.

Tost also confirmed in the interview that Toro Rosso is on schedule with its 2017 car, the STR12, which will make its on-track debut in a filming day prior to pre-season testing in February.

“We have done the crash tests and will do a filming day with the new car before the first winter test,” he said.