Tost Safety cars cost Verstappen podium chance
Max Verstappen was robbed of the opportunity to give his maiden Formula 1 podium from the late-race security vehicles in the United States grandprix, reckons his group manager.
The Dutchman finally finished fourth at Austin, but Toro Rosso chief Franz Tost believes there was a possibility of doing even better if Mercedes was not assisted out by events.
Like Sebastian Vettel, Verstappen had halted for tyres at the initial safety vehicle when Marcus Ericsson arrived into a halt on the right track - and it seemed to have given both guys an excellent chance to overcome Mercedes.
But when the digital safety-car for Nico Hulkenberg's crash as well as the entire safety vehicle for Daniil Kvyat's crash were called out, Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton got their stops taken care of without dropping much time.
Talking to Motorsport.com in what would have occurred in the event the race had panned out without these security vehicles, Tost mentioned: "If it could happen to be a non-safety-car, I'm convinced that Vettel could have won the race.
"I couldn't consider that Mercedes failed to stop [at the initial safety vehicle] as Nico needed to come in yet again. And when it had continued, I do not believe they could have found Vettel anymore.
"And, it may happen to be that Max might have ended on the podium. This was what I had been computing. But sadly there was yet again a safety-car which aided Mercedes.
"Yet it turned out to be a real great operation as well as a real great effect and that I am more than pleased using the team as well as the motorists."
Verstappen getting better
Tost said that Verstappen's run to fourth once again emphasized his rate as a motorist - and revealed evidence that he was becoming more powerful over the time.
"Of program he's becoming better," said Tost. "He's an extremely steep learning curve and gradient, and Max did a wonderful job this week end.
"And I will let you know why: on Friday Max cannot run in P1, no timed laps due to technical difficulties, and he arrived now in to qualifying without realizing the track well, and he certified in Q3.
"The race it self was also an incredibly powerful performance from his side from the start onwards because he was constantly in the leading section of the team.
"At the finish, he commanded the race and he understood just how quickly he needed to push, how to be cautious using the tyres and graining, and the best way to work in the vehicle.
"Tost had every thing under control, also it was truly remarkable - a superb job."
Tost additionally believed that Carlos Sainz deserved praise because of his battling spirit, having regained from a qualifying crash.
"Carlos also did a real great job because he had this injury in the morning [qualifying]. Carlos had an excellent beginning, returning from 11th place to the initial lap, also it demonstrated how competitive he was without touching anyone and without working into problems.
"His last stint was also really, extremely fascinating. Simply look at the number of cars Carlos overtook. Carlos was demonstrating additionally that he's got lots of possibility. Our drivers, them both, are displaying a really, very good execution." Read Source
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