Gascoyne defiant on new Toyota
Toyota technical director Mike Gascoyne has remained bullishly defiant that his new TF105 will help the team enjoy some success this year, despite a growing belief that the new car is currently not a match for its front-running rivals.

The car is the first produced from scratch by Gascoyne and, with big name signings Ralf Schumacher and Jarno Trulli recruited by the team, there is no excuse for the team not to turnaround its relatively disappointing results in F1 so far.

And even though its drivers are relatively downbeat about the current form of the TF105, despite a new aerodynamic package coming on board last month, Gascoyne insists that a few races into the season the team's fortunes will improve dramatically.

Speaking about the lack of pace shown in testing, Gascoyne said: "I am not and never have been concerned by lap times from test sessions. In my opinion, people tend to read far too much into testing times, which gives an unrepresentative picture of team performance.

"Each team has its own bespoke testing programme and it serves no good to be tempted to lower the fuel load for a quick test lap. We have been focussed on long runs to evaluate our performance and a clearer indication of our true competitiveness will only be seen in Melbourne. I stick to my firm belief that Toyota will enjoy a successful season in 2005. "

Trulli and Schumacher will have use of a new rear wing from this weekend's season opening Australian Grand Prix, while Gascoyne is planning to introduce a new front-wing in Malaysia prior to what he promises will be the most aggressive development programme that the team has ever conducted before.

Toyota's hopes of moving nearer the front of the field over the course of the season will also be boosted by the fact that it plans a major engine upgrade at the Spanish Grand Prix in May.

The team's engine chief Luca Marmorini said: "Only once we are confident with the reliability will we think about bringing in performance upgrades. We planned to introduce a new spec engine in time for the start of the European season, which in terms of engines and rules, means the fifth race of the year in Barcelona.

”We already have several development steps in our pockets for the season, but we have to assess the situation after the first four races of the year. I am confident in that respect, but reliability is and will continue to be the decisive factor - you can't score points if you don't finish the race.”
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Series Formula 1
Teams Toyota Racing
Author Jonathan Noble
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