Carlos Sainz Jr. hopes that Toro Rosso will soon know which engines it will be using for the 2016 Formula 1 season to ease concerns about the team’s future.
Toro Rosso acts as the B-team to Red Bull Racing, whose own difficulties with Renault power units over the past two years have prompted the parties to agree a split at the end of 2015.
As a result, with less than five months to go until the first pre-season tests for 2016, both Red Bull and Toro Rosso are without an engine contract, raising questions about their futures in the sport.
Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko has said that the teams would only race in 2016 if they had a competitive engine, making clear that the future of the energy drink giant’s F1 projects are far from certain.
After Mercedes rejected working with Red Bull for fear of increased competition, Ferrari has been left as the only possible engine partner for 2016. However, negotiations are still ongoing, and it is known that not all at Maranello are in favor of the move.
Speaking to Spanish newspaper MARCA, Sainz said that although he was relaxed about the situation, he would like to know where Toro Rosso stands for 2016 soon so the team can continue its preparations.
“I’m calm, and the team is happy with me, but nobody knows anything 100% in this sport,” Sainz said.
“In any case, it would be good to know the brand of engine for the year to come soon, for designing the back of the car. Every day that passes is time lost in the car’s development.”
Sainz has enjoyed a quietly impressive debut season in F1, finishing in the points on six occasions in the opening 14 races of the season.
However, the Spaniard believes that with Ferrari engines, Toro Rosso could surprise many in 2016 and perhaps achieve even bigger results.
“I imagine yes, we can have a good car next year,” Sainz said. “If we continue along the line of this year, with a slightly better engine, we could spring a surprise.”