Scuderia Toro Rosso today started a two day test, running the new STR3 car for the first time. Having started this season with a modified version of the 2007 car, (STR2B) the plan was to introduce the new car as from the Turkish Grand Prix in two races time.
However, these plans might have to be changed as the new car was very badly damaged in a testing accident today. Fortunately, Sebastien Bourdais, who was at the wheel, is perfectly okay and did not require any medical attention whatsoever. If only we could say the same for STR3! Engineers are currently examining the car to see if it is heading straight for the Toro Rosso Museum of Modern Art. One thing is certain, the car will not be ready for tomorrow's final day of testing. The cause of the incident is being investigated by our engineers.
Up until this afternoon's crash, Bourdais had completed 71 laps, with a quickest time of 1.20.715 and during the lunch-break, the Frenchman had this to say: "The base line is quiet good and I have to say I'm pleasantly surprised. However, the track conditions might be extremely good so I need to be careful with everything I say but so far the car has had no problems at all, which is a very encouraging point. The feeling is good and I felt comfortable in the car straight away. From a driving point of view you can feel it has more downforce than the current one and it's a
big step forward on the aero package."
Prior to today's test, STR3 underwent its first Aero test in the hands of Red Bull Young Driver Brandon Hartley in Vairano at the end of March, when the New Zealander covered 983 km.
As the team always planned to continue with STR2B in the Spanish Grand Prix, this incident has no affect on preparation for the next round of the world championship.
Driver: Sebastien Bourdais
Best time: 1:20.715 71 laps Pos. 8th