Scuderia Toro Rosso once again failed to get their drivers into Q2 despite introducing the new STR3 in Monaco. Such was the performance of the new car around the tortuous streets of Monte Carlo that Sebastian Vettel reckons his only hope for a decent result is if it rains.
The best the German could manage was eighteenth place around the Principality and his gearbox penalty will relegate him even further back.
“I was unable to maintain a good level of grip over the whole track, so I was losing time, especially towards the end of the lap,â€ reflected the German.
“It s a shame, because with my penalty I will be at the back of the grid. So I m hoping for rainâ€¦..lots of rain!â€
Vettel s team-mate Sebastien Bourdais could not manage much better having qualified sixteenth with a lap 1.16.806 around the demanding street circuit. Both drivers did very little dry running in the morning sessions, so they were stepping into the unknown for qualifying.
“Our situation was not helped by the fact we still lack experience with the new car and had nearly no dry running this morning,â€ commented Bourdais.
“I am finding it very difficult to read what the car is doing, especially under braking when I am locking wheels a lot,â€ the 28-year-old added.
Torro Rosso arrived in Monaco with only two points to there name; Bourdais collecting points at the season curtain-raiser in Melbourne despite failing to finish with an engine problem.
However the Faenza-based outfit seems to have come to halt with both drivers failing to finish four out of five races. Toro Rosso needed to bring out the new car for more reliability rather than anything else.
The Italian team will be hoping that their new car will find speed within the next few races, and with some much need reliability, they will be looking to push up into the midfield.
Giorgio Ascanelli, Torro Rosso test driver spoke about the car s performance at the end of qualifying today, “I am pleased that we experienced no problems with either car and managed to shake down two new rear ends. The performance though is not quite there and it looks as though there are some difficulties in putting together the necessary lap time.â€
With both drivers failing to progress to Q2, Toro Rosso will need to make rapid improvements to get back to where they were in 2007 when they were consistently making it past the first knock-out session.