First own-design for Toro Rosso
1 February 2010 – Toro Rosso's STR5 of 2010 is an important milestone for the Faenza team as it constructs its own car for the first time. Previously, the Italian squad's contenders were prepared completely by Red Bull Technology, the same subsidiary company behind Red Bull Racing's cars.
With so-called 'customer cars' banned for this season, Toro Rosso is no longer permitted to make use of develop work conducted by its sister team.
"At the end of last year, we had already increased our staff to around 150 and now we have 200," explained Toro Rosso Technical Director Giorgio Ascanelli, who still works at Red Bull Technology as a leading aerodynamicist alongside Adrian Newey.
"At the end of March 2009 we got the green light as to what actually constituted being an F1 Constructor; that was the starting point for building up our operation in such a way that we could actually design a car which was achievable in engineering terms, working in a different way to the methods we had adopted in the past.
"Being recognised as a Constructor involves owning the intellectual property rights to what are defined as the listed parts: these are effectively the monocoque, the safety structures that are subject to homologation and crash testing, which means the rear and front structures, primary and secondary roll-over structures and the complete aerodynamic package, the suspension, fuel and cooling systems."
With the status of Constructor successfully adapted, Ascanelli stresses that the job involves more than designing a new car. "Before even thinking about producing a car, we had to acquire the right tools to carry out these tasks and also hire the people who are to use these structures," he continued. "Finding 50 people and putting them in an environment where they can do their job has been a tough task.
"As for the challenge we face this season, to quote Mao Tse-tung, 'We should not be talking about what we will do when we have crossed the river, we must first get the bridges and ships with which to cross the river.' We have started by building those bridges and ships. We are not quite there yet and, at this stage, getting everyone to work together in a productive fashion is our most important task."