The real deal on the Cepsa-Toro Rosso deal
10 September, 2011
Sep.10 (GMM) Spanish oil company Cepsa is not buying Toro Rosso, team boss Franz Tost insisted at Monza and has gone out of his way to clarify the deal which has connections ranging from Spain to Canada to Abu Dhabi.
Before arriving at Monza, the Red Bull-owned team confirmed new sponsorship deals with Cepsa as well as Nova Chemicals, which is also linked with Abu Dhabi’s International Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC).
IPIC is also linked with Aabar, the part-owner of Mercedes GP, triggering speculation Toro Rosso might also be changing hands.
The rumours said Abu Dhabi wants to relaunch Toro Rosso as ‘Team UAE’ (United Arab Emirates) and relocate it from Faenza to Abu Dhabi’s Yas circuit.
According to The National newspaper, Tost insisted: “These companies are sponsors, not investors or shareholders in the Toro Rosso team.”
He said the Yas relocation stories are “fanciful” not only for logistical reasons but because Toro Rosso has “already started” to upgrade its existing factory.
Meanwhile Tost as well as Jaime Alguersuari have denied that Toro Rosso’s new sponsorship deal has secured the future of the Spanish driver.
The 21-year-old Spaniard, as well as his Swiss teammate Sebastien Buemi, are under pressure by Toro Rosso’s owner Red Bull to prove they should not be replaced for 2012 by Daniel Ricciardo.
“It’s good that they (Cepsa) have come along, because the team needs the money,” Spanish media reports quote Alguersuari as saying at Monza.
“But I don’t think they have come for me, they have come for Toro Rosso because we are a young team with huge potential,” he insisted.
And Tost told The National newspaper: “Jaime’s future with the team is exactly the same as it was before Cepsa came on board.”
Alguersuari also told Spanish reporters that Toro Rosso’s 2012 car has been in the wind tunnel now for “about a month and a half”.
Meanwhile, he said he quickly got over the Belgian grand prix two weeks ago, when Bruno Senna took him out at the first corner.
“I don’t stay angry for long,” said Alguersuari. “Bruno sent me a message and apologised, which I accept. We can all make mistakes, even big ones like that. I hope I never make one that destroys the race of another.”