Toro Rosso mileage "incredible" after "tough winter" - Sainz

Toro Rosso driver Carlos Sainz says that the mileage his team has been racking up in testing is a fantastic achievement after a hectic off-season.

As the sister team to Red Bull, Toro Rosso spent much of 2015 in uncertainty regarding the source of its engines for 2016, eventually settling on the use of year-old Ferrari power units.

The late decision certainly contributed to a "tough winter" for the Italian squad, but it has so far showcased impressive reliability, its overall mileage of 757 laps currently stood as second-best to Mercedes' 1011 laps.

"Second behind Mercedes in mileage for a team like Toro Rosso with such a tough winter like we had is just, I think, incredible," Sainz said after completing his runs on Wednesday, a day on which the Spaniard racked up the most laps with 166.

"[This] shows that this team can do very big things, very great things. That's why you always see everyone with a smile, including myself - because I am calm and I know that the homework so far is being completed.

"Last year I wouldn't even dream of doing more than 100 laps on a day - probably not even during a race," he added.

"We're just doing laps, laps, laps and nothing is breaking, everything keeps going. We still have some issues, I'm not gonna lie, very small issues, but the car is still on track and this is what is giving us the best baseline for Melbourne, for sure."

But performance is a question mark

Sainz's best time on Wednesday was good for seventh overall, but the Spaniard insisted that his team has not yet run at its full potential.

"We haven't really seen what we are capable of doing," he said.

"We've spent a lot of time on the medium, our weakest tyre last year... we were wanting to really push on the tyre, to see what we were missing last year and how to improve it.

"Maybe last day you will see a bit more where we are - but even if we put the softer tyre on, we will not know where we are, unfortunately."

Additional reporting by Oleg Karpov

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Event Barcelona March testing
Track Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya
Drivers Carlos Sainz Jr.
Teams Toro Rosso
Article type Breaking news