Wraps come off new Toro Rosso

Going it alone with the 2010 challenger


1 February 2010 - 09:49
Wraps come off new Toro Rosso

A busy morning in Valencia continues with Scuderia Toro Rosso launching its new 2010 contender, the STR5.

Unlike previous seasons where the team have been able to rely heavily on Red Bull Technologies for the design of the new car, the STR5 is designed and constructed at the team’s Faenza facility.

The team are keen to gain as much mileage as possible with the car ahead of the new season, pointing out that while their driver line-up is unchanged this year, both Sebastien Buemi and Jaime Alguersuari are still relatively inexperienced.

"2010 is a landmark year for Scuderia Toro Rosso as it detaches itself from Red Bull Technology and, in accordance with new F1 rules, has to do all its own car design and build work in-house," the team said in a statement. "In recent years, more and more production had been undertaken at the team’s Faenza facility, but now we really have to go it alone.

"Continuity is important in F1 and we still have Franz Tost at the helm and Giorgio Ascanelli heading the technical operation. With a longer than usual 19 race season ahead, the team has reached its first target in having the new car ready for the first of the 15 days of winter testing, which will be the key to ensuring that the car, the team and drivers are as well prepared as possible for the first round in Bahrain."

The STR5 has been designed and built to conform to the technical regulations which apply this year. Although the changes are not as significant as those introduced twelve months ago, they are important enough to have had a major impact on the philosophy of the car.

Possibly the biggest difference stems from the fact that the 2010 car has been designed to make the most of running a double diffuser, whereas in 2009, the car had to be adapted mid-season to make use of this device.

Another unusual feature of the new rules is that the introduction of a narrower front tyre was originally conceived as part of a move to facilitate overtaking, in conjunction with the KERS , which all teams have actually agreed to leave on the shelf this season.

Understanding how the new tyres work – the rears also feature a different construction – will be one of the main tasks undertaken in February testing.

Also significant in defining the shape of the car is the ban on refuelling, which requires a much larger fuel cell. This has led to STR5 being longer than its predecessor.

Scuderia Toro Rosso has undergone a recent and rapid expansion of its design team and its wind tunnel in Bicester is also a relatively new tool. These two factors mean the overall design of STR5 could be seen as conservative, given that getting a new workforce to operate as a team and validating and learning to trust wind tunnel data is not the work of a moment.

The extra fuel load has not just impacted on the shape of the car, as the additional weight has meant a reappraisal of the suspension and braking, as well as other areas.


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