2017 Japanese GP, Scuderia Toro Rosso


October 6, 2017

First day of track action in Suzuka. Here are our drivers and teams' comments after Free Practice 1 and 2.

Carlos Sainz (STR12-01, Car 55)
First Practice Session
Best lap: 1:32.252, pos. 17th, 14 laps
Second Practice Session
Best lap: no time, pos. 13th, 1 laps

Carlos Sainz:

"A tricky Friday for us! Obviously, the accident in FP1 was a bit of a pity... I didn't expect that to happen, I just clipped the outside kerb a bit too much and it sent me into a spin and then into the barriers. It looked quite incredible on the TV, but luckily it wasn't such a big one from inside the cockpit. We can't forget that a minimal miscalculation here can make you pay a big price! I'm happy that the mechanics could put the car back together for FP2 – they did an amazing job like they always do, pushing for me and the team. We were ready to run in FP2, but unfortunately the weather conditions didn't help us and we were only able to complete an installation lap. Hopefully tomorrow is a better day!"

Pierre Gasly (STR12-04, Car 10)
First Practice Session
Best lap: 1:32.501, pos. 18th, 18 laps
Second Practice Session
Best lap: no time, 0 laps

Pierre Gasly:

"Not the most exciting day in terms of running, I must admit... Having said that, it was still good to be back here in Suzuka and be able to drive during this morning's FP1. We didn't do many laps in total – we didn't even drive out of the garage in this afternoon's FP2 because of the weather conditions! – but we got some good data and we now have some work for tomorrow in order to improve our performance. Another positive is that the seat now feels much better than in Malaysia, I'm happy about this and now we just need to find a bit more pace. We have one more practice session left to get ready for qualifying and I think it will be a pretty busy one! I'm now really looking forward to tomorrow."

Jonathan Eddolls (Chief Race Engineer):

"We came here with some new set-up ideas to try on the car, looking to maximize the potential from the aero package we introduced at the last event. We managed to get some good testing across the two cars in this morning's FP1, both aero and mechanical, which was very positive. Unfortunately, Carlos made a small mistake and crashed, but the mechanics did a fantastic job in turning the car around and getting it out in the afternoon for an installation lap. We gathered good data in the morning that we'd planned to develop further into FP2 but, unfortunately, with the weather conditions, we didn't get to trial those. We'll now have to spend a bit of time tonight trying to understand exactly what we're confident to take into FP3, because we don't want to spend the whole of that session learning about the car – that's for qualifying performance for Pierre. As for Carlos' car, the situation is slightly different because of his engine penalty, so we'll have a different focus for tomorrow, more based around race performance."