Toro Rosso, the last team to announce a driver line up for 2007, confirmed on February 13th that Vitantonio Liuzzi will continue to race with the squad this season but Scott Speed is not yet definite. At a media meeting in Barcelona Toro Rosso...
Toro Rosso, the last team to announce a driver line up for 2007, confirmed on February 13th that Vitantonio Liuzzi will continue to race with the squad this season but Scott Speed is not yet definite. At a media meeting in Barcelona Toro Rosso cited 'contractual issues' as the reason for Speed not being confirmed.
Both Liuzzi and Speed have always seemed fairly confident of keeping their seats even though the team has been linked with other drivers and the aforementioned pair never appeared as named drivers on Toro Rosso's official FIA entry list for 2007. Evidently Speed is going to have to wait a little longer to find out his F1 future.
"Everything is fine with Tonio, he's in the car and he's going to drive," Toro Rosso co-owner Gerhard Berger told Reuters. "With Scott we still have some contractual issues to sort out. We are going to see later… We analysed our drivers very well after last season and found their strengths and weaknesses quite well."
"We worked very hard together over the winter, especially with Tonio. He's going to make less mistakes in the second season, I think he's also working harder than in the first one so he's going to be better. But you're not going to see miracles because they just don't exist in Formula One."
Speed was the first of the drivers to score a point for Toro Rosso, in Melbourne last year, but subsequently lost it for overtaking under yellow flags. Liuzzi managed to hold on to his point that he picked up in the USA and it's the only one the team has achieved so far.
Speed, who was not present at the Toro Rosso media call, may not find out if he will retain his seat until the first race of the season. Berger conceded that the American was still the favourite but said resolving the issue could take time. "It could be in a matter of a few days, or it could be a matter of a few weeks," he commented. "It is going to take as long as necessary, and it could be as late as Melbourne."
Despite this undisclosed contractual wrangle, Toro Rosso doesn't appear to have its eye on anyone else. Sebastian Bourdais has tested with the team but is in Champ Car this year and Red Bull man Robert Doornbos has gone the same route. Another rumoured candidate was Tiago Monterio but the ex-Spyker MF1 pilot just announced he "will not take up any of the offers he has received from F1 teams for 2007".