Sainz boosted by Toro Rosso F1 2017 similarities to Mercedes

Carlos Sainz says he takes confidence that his Toro Rosso Formula 1 team has produced a car with very similar design concepts to the title-winning Mercedes outfit.

Sainz boosted by Toro Rosso F1 2017 similarities to Mercedes
Carlos Sainz Jr., Scuderia Toro Rosso STR12
Scuderia Toro Rosso STR12 front wing detail
Helmet of Carlos Sainz Jr., Scuderia Toro Rosso
Scuderia Toro Rosso STR12 front suspension detail
Carlos Sainz Jr., Scuderia Toro Rosso STR12
Scuderia Toro Rosso STR12 front wing detail
Mercedes AMG F1 W08 detail
Scuderia Toro Rosso STR12 detail
Mercedes AMG F1 W08 detail
Scuderia Toro Rosso STR12 detail
Scuderia Toro Rosso STR12 front wing detail

Toro Rosso became the final team to unveil its 2017 challenger at Barcelona on Sunday, with the STR12 featuring a Mercedes-style front suspension, sidepod and nose layout.

With the Faenza-based team having impressed with its aerodynamic development over recent years, Sainz has said he hopes the Mercedes similarities bode well for what Toro Rosso can deliver this year.

“I first need to try it and compare it to others on track, and see it on the stopwatch a bit, probably in the second week of testing, but at least the car, when it looks similar to the car that is winning every race, it gives me confidence and a good feeling,” said Sainz.

“I think Toro Rosso can be confident because if there is something they showed in the last three years, it is that they are able to do some good aerodynamics.

“With all these new regulations coming up I have confidence in the team that we can create a good base. [We will] probably not win the championship, I am not asking for that, but a weapon that allows us to be in the top ten, that is what I expect and I really hope for.

“And then there will be development. This year I know there is going to be massive development and I really hope we can hold onto it like we were not able to do last year because of the engine compromise.”

Mercedes coincidence

Technical director James Key said that while there were positives that it was Mercedes which had pursued a similar idea, there was also a slight disappointment that his team had not gone it alone.

“On the one hand we were sort of pleased to see someone else has done a similar thing, but on the other we were disappointed that we weren't the only team to think of something. Let's see.

“There's many different concepts out there, actually. The diversity is very obvious.”

Key made it clear, however, that it was a complete coincidence that Toro Rosso has come up with the Mercedes style rather than the idea having been copied.

“I looked at the Mercedes and went ‘Ah, they've got our front suspension.’ Most people would say we've got Mercedes' front suspension.

“The nose is similar, the front of the sidepods is similar, even the bodywork on the sidepods is similar. It’s complete coincidence.”

Key said the decision to change its nose philosophy had come about because Toro Rosso thought the narrower solution was better for the 2017 rules.

“It’s very much an aerodynamic decision from our group, who looked at the various options,” he added.

“It is a different direction to the one we’ve had – the last two years have been reasonably similar, for us but also for other teams.

“Looking at the various options, that narrow nose and narrow pylon space at the front we felt matched the philosophy we thought was correct for the car at the time. You’ll have to see how things progress.”

shares
comments
Gallery: F1 2017 Toro Rosso STR12 in full detail

Previous article

Gallery: F1 2017 Toro Rosso STR12 in full detail

Next article

Sainz says lap count, not laptime the focus for Toro Rosso

Sainz says lap count, not laptime the focus for Toro Rosso
Load comments
Why Mercedes isn't confident it's really ahead of Red Bull at Imola Prime

Why Mercedes isn't confident it's really ahead of Red Bull at Imola

While Mercedes struck back against Red Bull by topping the times at Imola on Friday ahead of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, the overall picture remains incredibly close. Despite having a possible edge this weekend, the reigning Formula 1 world champion squad is not taking anything for granted...

Formula 1
Apr 16, 2021
What Mercedes must do to keep its F1 title challenge on track Prime

What Mercedes must do to keep its F1 title challenge on track

Mercedes may find itself leading the drivers' and constructors' standings after Lewis Hamilton's victory in the Bahrain Grand Prix, but it is well aware that it came against the odds, with Red Bull clearly ahead. Here's what the Brackley team must do to avoid its crown slipping .

Formula 1
Apr 16, 2021
The double whammy that is defining Vettel’s F1 fate Prime

The double whammy that is defining Vettel’s F1 fate

It's been a tough start to Sebastian Vettel's Aston Martin F1 career, with a lack of pre-season testing mileage followed by an incident-packed Bahrain GP. But two key underlying factors mean a turnaround is no guarantee.

Formula 1
Apr 14, 2021
The themes to watch in F1's Imola return Prime

The themes to watch in F1's Imola return

Three weeks is a long time in Formula 1, but in the reshaped start to the 2021 season the teams head to Imola to pick things up after the frenetic Bahrain opener. Here's what to look out for and the developments to follow at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix

Formula 1
Apr 13, 2021
The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola Prime

The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola

After a pandemic-hit winter of seat-swapping, F1 kicked off its season with several new faces in town, other drivers adapting to new environments, and one making a much-anticipated comeback. Ben Anderson looks at who made the most of their opportunity and who needs to try harder…

Formula 1
Apr 12, 2021
The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture Prime

The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture

Aston Martin’s only previous foray into Formula 1 in the late 1950s was a short-lived and unsuccessful affair. But it could have been so different, says Nigel Roebuck.

Formula 1
Apr 10, 2021
Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace Prime

Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace

Max Verstappen’s star quality in Formula 1 is clear. Now equipped with a Red Bull car that is, right now, the world title favourite and the experience to support his talent, could 2021 be the Dutchman’s year to topple the dominant force of Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes?

Formula 1
Apr 9, 2021
Is Formula 1 as good as it has ever been now? Prime

Is Formula 1 as good as it has ever been now?

For many, many years Formula 1 has strived to do and to be better on all fronts. With close competition, a growing fanbase, a stable political landscape and rules in place to encourage sustainability, 2021 is on course to provide an unexpected peak

Formula 1
Apr 8, 2021