Formula 1: Toro Rosso as F1 constructor

Daniel Reinhard
Formula 1: Toro Rosso team boss Franz Tost
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The second step is the hardest. Toro Rosso passed the first with distinction. The former B-Team from R ed Bull won his first Grand Prix in front of the senior partner. Franz Tost's team only needed 49 missions until the corks popped in Monza in 2008. Toyota didn't make it to 139 GP starts Despite four times the budget.

In the first four years, Toro Rosso was Red Bull's appendage. The basic structure of the car was provided by Red Bull Technology. Toro Rosso adapted the design plans to the Ferrari engine and already got a premonition in a small area of ​​what it means to be a Formula 1 designer. Anyone who wants to do everything in-house needs people, machines, infrastructure and money. The budget for the customer model of Red Bull boss Dietrich Mateschitz increases 'by 30 to 50 percent, depending on how much you are willing to spend,' says Tost. The expenditure in 2010 will scratch the 100 million euro mark.

Toro Rosso must develop and produce

The new Concorde agreement prohibits customer teams. It differentiates between parts that you have to design yourself and components that you can buy. The list of hand-made components includes: chassis, fairing, front and rear wings, chassis, steering, radiator and brakes. Only the engine, the gearbox and the clutch may be contributed from outside.

Franz Tost believes that the path taken by Formula 1 is wrong in view of tight budgets: 'A lot could be done with the Red Bull model Saving money. It is incredibly difficult to raise 20 million euros in the market today. In addition, customer cars guarantee a tight field. We will see large gaps again this year, because the teams that are confronted with this task for the first time are short It’s impossible to catch up with the established racing teams’s lead in experience. '

Working days, test days and racing days

Technical Director Giorgio Ascanelli adds:' Jean Todt has it took Ferrari seven years to build a world championship team. ' Nevertheless, on March 13, 2009, Dietrich Mateschitz gave the go-ahead for the Toro Rosso self-construction. 'We had five months to hire the people, buy the necessary machinery and the infrastructureAscanelli groans. The chain smoker knew what to expect. He knows the business from the perspective of Ferrari, McLaren and Benetton.

With so much upgrading in such a short time, it is good that Ascanelli with his Boss on the same wavelength radio. Before the Christmas holidays Tost said contemptuously: 'There are only working days, test days and racing days. There's no room for anything else. 'Toro Rosso has become a different racing team. Four factory buildings became six, and 6,000 square meters of work space 10,000. Four million euros are in the new machinery, not including the wind tunnel. Because each team only use one system allowed, Red Bull sold its second channel in Bicester, England, to its little brother from Faenza.

Toro Rosso is hiring

Toro Rosso used the Jerez test in December to compare the wind tunnel data with the route. 'Better than expected, worse than hoped,' says Ascanelli bitterly. Around three million devour additional salaries. It is not easy to attract good people to Faenza. An On a gray December day, the place exudes the charm of a disused colliery. Not even the grappa distillery opposite brings light into the darkness.

The workforce grew from 165 to 257. There is still room for improvement the number of employees of 280 required as of December 31, 2011. The largest share of the new jobs is occupied by engineers: 38 designers, 25 aerodynamics engineers in Bicester, eight CFD computer specialists in Faenza, eight chassis technicians, seven transmission specialists. Growing is tricky. 'We don't want to rush the construction,' says Tost. 'Now we have a foundation, and then we'll see where the strengths and weaknesses of the new people lie.'

Learning process in the first year

In contrast to his colleagues, Tost believes that disarmament makes it easier for large teams to return to normal do: 'They can choose their best employees.' Ascanelli gives: 'The quickest way to destroy a lot of money is to have a lot of it.' 60 percent of the total of 8,000 parts are manufactured in-house. This also includes the chassis and the wings. The nose and the underbody will be added in the course of the year. Because a lot of things happen for Toro Rosso for the first time, the production department still has to find out which components are better made to order and which are produced in-house.

'Wishbones are cheaper abroad,' Tost lists. 'The production binds a lot of people in a limited period of time. In February you will have your warehouse full of wishbones.' It is different with the front wing. 'There are so many variations of this over the course of the year that you better react to them in-house.' Building your own car entails many costs and tasks for Toro Rosso that the racing team previously had nothing to do with, or only marginallywould have. Tost holds a crumbled rear crash structure in his hand and does the math: 'To pass the official crash tests, we practice ourselves beforehand. There are three variants of the crash structure. If one passes the test, we try the next version even more easily One million euros is spent on crash preparation alone. '

Expensive computer technology

Quality control is also being tightened. The parts, the load of which is calculated on the first floor, are lashed down in a test stand on the ground floor to determine whether they break at the point in time that the construction has calculated. In another hall, four Toro Rosso employees gather around an engineer who is training them on a five-axis milling machine. Based on the computer specifications, the fully automatically models the negative forms for the carbon products from plastic blocks.

CFD technology, which allows the flow of components or the entire car to be visualized, has its price. The mainframe, which manages 20 terraflops (floating point operations per second), cost 2.5 million euros. 'So far, the Red Bull computer has done the work for us,' grins Ascanelli, 'we hung on the server and made our modifications to the interfaces that concerned the engine installation.' The processes that mainly happened at Red Bull up to the end of 2009 must now also run smoothly at Toro Rosso. 'The structure of the car from the drawing to the finished product,' explains Ascanelli.

Toro Rosso takes the conservative path

Because the engineers work with the Wind tunnel work could only start in September, it was clear to him: 'We had to decide a lot of things based on gut instinct. That's why I took the conservative path.' Of course, based on the experience with the Red Bull RB5 from last year. Former owner Gerhard Berger thinks that this is a good basis: 'Toro Rosso knows the data for the best car from 2009. So you don't have to design into the blue.' The chassis of the STR5 was homologated on time on January 11th. As planned, it should be on its wheels on January 28th. 'We even built in enough air for a few breakdowns,' reveals Ascanelli.

The biggest stomachache is the securing of stability. 'We had too many defects in 2009. We missed the test drives. Others replace them with test benches.' What used to be 30 percent in the hands of the Milton Keynes A team is now 100 percent a Toro Rosso construction site. Ascanelli and Tost are already building in advance in the event that the jump into the cold water is associated with a hard impact. 'Where we are today in the face of time pressure is a small miracle. We hope that people will recognize that.'


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