...as the Italian squad confirm Liuzzi for 2007
Toro Rosso unveiled their 2007 challenger, the STR2, at a low-key event at Spains Circuit de Catalunya on Tuesday. The Italian squad also confirmed Vitantonio Liuzzi would remain with the team for 2007, but, blaming ongoing contractual negotiations, did not reveal their second race driver.
Although the media had been warned that the Ferrari-engined STR2 might not be ready in time for the scheduled launch, the Toro Rosso mechanics worked through Monday night to make their deadline and the new car finally broke cover at the Barcelona circuit late in the afternoon.
Despite the last-minute launch, Toro Rosso's co-owner and ex-Formula One driver Gerhard Berger is confident the STR2 will help the team challenge the front-runners as the season progresses.
We wont be getting any pole positions or race wins this year, but we have progressed as a team and we have to move forward to fighting some of the bigger teams on a regular basis, Berger explained.
Designed by Red Bull Technology, the new STR2 is the result of the combined efforts of the teams own designers and Red Bull's Adrian Newey, who recently oversaw the launch of the RB3. In light of recent media speculation, however, Berger was quick to refute claims the STR2 was a customer car.
Our car is not a customer car he explained. A customer car is when you go to another team, give them money and they give you a car. This is not the case with us and before we went down the route of working with Red Bull Technology, we took our own legal advice and checked with the FIA. I am completely satisfied that our car is in compliance with the rules.
The STR2 was scheduled to make its track debut on Tuesday afternoon with Liuzzi at the helm but, with the day's test session already over, the team may have to wait until Wednesday to give the new car its first run.