BIG TASK AHEAD: Toro Rosso's Max Verstappen, F1's youngest driver yet, has a big job ahead of him with a goal of fifth for the team for 2015. Image: AP / Luca Bruno
JEREZ, Spain - The Toro Rosso Formula 1 team unveiled its 2015 car on Saturday (Jan 31 2015) and set its rookie drivers – one of them Max Verstappen, F1’s youngest yet - an ambitious target of fifth in the Constructors' championship.
The Red Bull-owned outfit took the wraps off the STR10 car at the Jerez circuit in Spain on the eve of pre-season testing with 17-year-old Verstappen partnering 20-year-old Spaniard Carlos Sainz.
Verstappen is the son of a former F1 driver Jos, Sainz of World Rally champion Carlos.
'AIMING FOR FIFTH'
The team principal of Red Bull’s junior team, Franz Tost, said: "The 2015 season is a new challenge for all of us. We've put a lot of work into the STR10 and we’re convinced we will have a successful year.
"Our objective is to finish fifth in the Constructors' championship – we’re ready to do our best to achieve that."
Renault-powered Toro Rosso was seventh in 2014, its drivers Frenchman Jean-Eric Vergne and Russian Daniil Kvyat; the latter has moved up to the senior team.
Toro Rosso’s best Constructors’ was sixth in 2008 when Germany's future four-time F1 champion Sebastian Vettel was driving for it.
Verstappen said on Saturday: "I can't wait for the season to start. Sunday will seem like a very long day, watching Carlos in the car." Verstappen will drive on Monday (Feb 2).
"With two days in the 2014 car at the Abu Dhabi test and the Friday mornings I did last season, combined with time spent in the simulator, I feel well prepared.”
With three four-day tests scheduled in Spain before the season opens in Melbourne, Australia, on March 15, each youngster will be hoping for as much track time as possible. Verstappen added: "Six days on track here in Spain and then it will be time to head for Australia and my first Grand Prix, something to which I’ve been looking forward ever since I started karting.”
Sainz said: "I’ve worked very hard on my personal fitness, familiarising myself with the team, and done some days in the simulator.
"Now we have only 12 days to prepare for Melbourne so going through all the race weekend procedures will be a priority for me, as well as putting in as many kilometres as possible behind the wheel."Stay with Wheels24 for the 2015 F1 season – fresh reports every day.