April 5th, 2014 (F1Plus / Chris Cameron-Dow) - In today's qualifying session for the Bahrain Grand Prix, neither Toro Rosso driver took part in Q3. It's the first time this season that there has not been at least one Toro Rosso in the top ten. From the reactions of the drivers after qualifying was over, it was a bit of a surprise.
At the season-opener in Australia, both Jean-Eric Vergne and Daniil Kvyat qualified and finished in the top ten. In Malaysia last week, Vergne qualified in the top ten but retired in the race, while Kvyat qualified 11th and finished 10th.
This weekend, there has been a Toro Rosso in the top ten in each of the three free practice sessions. So it's understandable that the team would have expected to have at least one driver in the top ten on the grid. But it was not to be. Both drivers were eliminated in Q2.
Kvyat qualified 13th, but will move up to 12th on the grid due to a grid penalty for Daniel Ricciardo. Vergne qualified 14th, just over a tenth of a second slower than his team-mate.
This is what the Toro Rosso drivers had to say after qualifying:
Daniil Kvyat: “I am a little bit disappointed and also surprised with only making it to Q2, because we were fast enough to get into Q3 looking at how the rest of the weekend went so far. But unfortunately the others were faster and we didn’t manage to improve enough so it wasn’t a very satisfying Qualifying session. We will have a look at this tonight and hopefully we can have another strong race tomorrow.”
Jean-Eric Vergne: “Today the team did again a very good job to give me a car that was more suitable for me and I had a good feeling in Q2. We made a good step forward compared to yesterday, even though I felt down in power and we will have to investigate the reasons for this. Anyway, we have to stay positive, also because starting 14th on the grid is not too bad and everything is possible. We just have to keep our head down and stay focussed.”