Williams admits they’re behind Toro Rosso

Date published: March 23 2016 - Editor

After the Formula 1 season got off to an exciting start over the weekend, Williams technical director Pat Symonds has admitted that they have underestimated the power of the Toro Rosso.

Despite Williams team driver Felipe Massa finishing ahead of Carlos Sainz, who placed ninth, and Max Verstappen, who finished tenth, Symonds still feels that their qualifying performance really showed just how competitive their car really is.

"In testing, we were not completely clear where Toro Rosso were," he told autosport.com.

"When we rank the cars, we put aero bars on our rankings because it's not perfect data and we had put aero bars which were more negative than positive on the Toro Rosso and that was a mistake.

"We should have made them symmetrical and then they would have been pretty good.

"Toro Rosso is the one which has really surprised us. The others are quite close to where we thought they would be."

Regarding the hierarchy on the grid, Symonds added that Toro Rosso are faster than their more established sister team, Red Bull Racing.

"We probably see Toro Rosso, then ourselves, then Force India," he said.

"I wouldn't like to separate ourselves and Force India and Red Bull.

"Toro Rosso are faster than Red Bull. Red Bull played their cards well in the race [to finish fourth with Daniel Ricciardo], they made the most of it.

"But it's a sample of one [race], we'll see how things change on different circuits."