A disappointing afternoon for Scuderia Toro Rosso come the end of the German Grand Prix, in which one of our cars failed to see the chequered flag and the other finished outside the points. With Daniil Kvyat starting eighth, we could have hoped for a decent points haul and a top ten finish should not have been out of the question for Jean-Eric Vergne either, as his thirteenth place in qualifying was partly due to a tyre strategy choice rather than a performance deficit. However, in the end, our French driver finished where he started in thirteenth spot.
With all the chaos at the start, Jev managed to make up two places immediately and then passed Sutil to go tenth. Inevitably, he was unable to stay ahead of Hamilton, who had started from the back and Ricciardo, who had lost ground avoiding the Massa-Magnussen collision at the start. Jev had started on new Options, which might have been less of an advantage than planned, given that track temperature today was 20 degrees down on Saturdays. He made his first stop on lap 13, then, while fighting with Grosjean, he got all four wheels off the track – a particularly hot topic with race stewards at the moment- and so, when he came in for his second stop on lap 37, he had to take a 5 second stop-go penalty, which pushed him down the order. With the mid-field so evenly matched, you never recover from a situation like that.
As for Daniil, in a race that was packed with spectacular action, he certainly provided the most fiery moment, as he had to park his STR9 and jump out quickly, after it burst into flames following a drive train failure. He'd already had a 'hot' afternoon, spinning while trying to repass Perez who had got ahead of the Russian on lap 5. Daniil therefore pitted on lap 9 after the spin, which dropped him to twentieth. He made a second stop on lap 32 and was running 14th on lap 44, when first he lost drive and then came the flames. It means the team will have plenty of work to do to put two cars out on track in Budapest this Friday coming, for the start of the Hungarian Grand Prix weekend.
Much to the delight of the home crowd, the German Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg won the race, while his English team-mate Lewis Hamilton provided most of the excitement, fighting his way from the back of the grid to take third place. He was unable to make it a Silver Arrows one-two, because Valtteri Bottas staked his claim at the front end of the field, with a very impressive drive to second place in the Williams. Overall, apart from the fact that Rosberg was never challenged, there was plenty of excitement and overtaking, proving that the new Formula 1 seems to be moving in the right direction.