Toro Rosso retains Ricciardo and Vergne
31 October 2012 – Toro Rosso has confirmed that both Daniel Ricciardo and Jean-Éric Vergne will remain with the squad in 2013. The pair had been subject to various questions over their future in recent weeks, but Wednesday's announcement ensures that their respective places on next years's Formula 1 grid are now secure.
Ricciardo explained earlier on Wednesday that he deserved another term with the outfit in 2013, with the Australian encouraged by his recent clutch of points finishes. The 23-year-old, who joined Toro Rosso after half a season with HRT, has recorded five top ten results so far this year, with four of those coming in the last six races.
"I am really pumped to know that I am continuing with Scuderia Toro Rosso for another season and want to thank the team and Red Bull," said Ricciardo. "There are big expectations for next year and I'm ready and willing to fulfil them.
"I feel I have been growing and developing as a driver and my approach to the technical side of the sport has also progressed this year, so I am sure that will serve me well in my second season with Toro Rosso. We have had quite a tough season, but despite that, I have always enjoyed a good relationship with all the guys and I am delighted at the idea of working with them for another year."
Vergne is equally pleased with his contract extension, a deal which sees him enter a second season in Formula 1. The Frenchman, who has picked up three eighth place race results so far this season, says he is looking forward to 'great things' next year.
"I am really happy about this great news," he said. "Thank you Toro Rosso and thank you Red Bull, who have backed me since the early days of my career. It has been a difficult season and, as a rookie, I have learned a lot, thanks to the support I got and the excellent relationship I have enjoyed with all the guys.
"I feel much stronger now and I know I have become a better driver. I really believe in this team and with all the experience I have gained, combined with the team's ambitious plans, I think we can look forward to great things in 2013, attacking all the way."
Toro Rosso team boss Franz Tost cited impressive racecraft and maturity as the main reasons for retaining both drivers, with new Technical Director James Key leading the push to create a car which will allow them to 'demonstrate their talent' next season.