Team Talk - Saturday in Spa

Toro Rosso

Motor Racing - Formula One World Championship - Belgian Grand Prix - Qualifying Day - Spa Francorchamps, Belgium

Carlos Sainz: “I’m enjoying this track so much! I’ve been waiting all weekend for the qualifying session, because in free practice you always carry more fuel and the car doesn’t feel as fast… But I knew that once we got to qualifying I’d really feel the speed and that’s just what happened out there today. I’m really pleased with getting through to Q3. Even though my last run could have been a little bit better, it was a good result for us today. It was a surprise because on paper it looked something very difficult to achieve. It’s not the track that suits us the most so tomorrow’s race will be difficult, but we are going to push as hard as we can, make the most out of any mistakes the others do and hopefully finish within the top ten. I must say I think this is one of the best qualifying sessions I’ve had this year, even though now it’s time to forget this and look ahead to tomorrow’s race, as that’s when the points are given.”

Max Verstappen: “It wasn’t the best of starts to my qualifying session, as I had a power issue in Q1 which didn’t let me focus on my lap, even though I managed to get through to Q2. But, to say the truth, we planned a qualifying session like this, stopping in Q2, as there was no point in trying to fight for Q3 because of my 10-place grid penalty for tomorrow’s race. By doing this we’ve also saved some tyres and hopefully we can fight for points… I know it’s not going to be easy, but to be racing in front of my home crowd will surely give me that extra boost I need. I’m confident and looking forward to the race. In this morning’s final practice session I could see that our long-run pace was quite good, so I’m hoping tomorrow will be the same. It’s not being the easiest of race weekends, but the car feels good so I’m happy about that and at this track anything is possible. There will definitely be some hard fights, but we will aim to finish in the points, that would be a really good result for us here in Spa.”

Jody Egginton (Head of Vehicle Performance): “A good qualifying for Carlos today. He optimised his laps and performed tidy runs. In Q3 I’d say there was a bit more available and we felt that we could’ve gained a few more tenths… But to get into the Q3 here in Spa is a great achievement. Regarding Max, his qualifying strategy was based around optimising his race and maintaining tyre sets. We had a small electrical engine related issue in Q1 which we resolved during the session and we now look forward to the race tomorrow – it will be a challenge to finish in the points but we are ready for the fight.”