Scuderia Toro Rosso are yet to receive the blueprints for their 2009 car, but both Sebastien Bourdais and Sebastien Buemi have been putting in some serious mileage in the 2008 post-season tests and also in the pre-2009 sessions. Driving a modified STR3 with less downforce and slick tyres, both drivers have been acclimatising themselves to how the new car may handle, and combined with Takuma Sato’s tests, the team have certainly been collecting a lot of information.
However, the information collected may be worthless as Scuderia Toro Rosso don’t have a car yet. Whereas rivals Force India now do. Having undergone a shakedown last week and completed some laps of Jerez yesterday, the VJM02 arguably puts the Silverstone-based squad ahead. They have one very experienced driver in Giancarlo Fisichella and Adrian Sutil is entering his third season of Formula One driving. With a strong Mercedes-Benz engine and all the other gubbins that come with it, Force India could be about to take a step up the grid order this year. Of course, looking at the RB5 – STR’s future car – it might not be as straight forward as you think.
Scuderia Toro Rosso have an experienced racer in Sebastien Bourdais, but the Frenchman has completed most of his running in the American Champ Car series. Bourdais’s first foray in Formula One didn’t go quite as well as he would have liked, but there were some strong performances. Conversely, Sebastien Buemi is a rookie and will start his very first season of Formula One in March when the teams convene in Melbourne for the first race. Sebastien Buemi has spent a lot of time in the car though, testing both the STR3 and the RB4. Scuderia Toro Rosso also have a decent engine with the Ferrari, although the package is less complete when compared to Force India’s set up.
So which team do you think will finish the 2009 season on top? The team that won a race in 2008, or the team that have a car already? Scuderia Toro Rosso versus Force India…[poll id=”34″]
Image © Franz Pammer/GEPA Pictures.