Toro Rosso: James Key still under contract following McLaren announcement

Toro Rosso has indicated that technical director James Key's move to McLaren is not being undertaken with its consent by confirming he still has a long-term contract with the team

Toro Rosso: James Key still under contract following McLaren announcement

McLaren announced on Thursday morning that Key will be joining the Woking outfit, although it didn't provide details of either his job title or, crucially, the timing of his move.

Toro Rosso in return has opted to make it clear that Key is still under contract.

It's believed that there are still negotiations to be concluded with McLaren in relation to Key's release, and that going public to remind the world of its contractual claim on him is simply part of Toro Rosso's strategy.

Some observers have suggested Toro Rosso harbours hopes of using the situation to land the services of McLaren junior driver Lando Norris for 2019 and beyond, but it seems unlikely that a settlement between the two teams would be anything but financial.

Key was understood to still be working at STR's factory in Faenza today. It's not yet clear whether he is destined for gardening leave, which is the usual course of action in such cases, especially given that his situation is now public.

"James has a valid long-term contract with Toro Rosso," team principal Franz Tost told Autosport.

"And that's all what I can say about this. There's nothing more to say."

Asked if the team was in negotiations with McLaren about the terms of Key's departure he said: "I think they will come to us.

"I have no reason to discuss it with them, because we have a contract. Everything has been said."

Tost did however insist the team has enough strength in depth for the uncertainty over Key's future to not have an impact on its immediate development plans

"Of course, it's not supporting us, all this story around James," he said. "This is clear.

"But the team from the technical side is strong enough, and there's a good view about what we have to do with it all.

"But we simply need also the time. I hope that we will bring some upgrades in the second half of the season, and if they are working as expected, I hope we can close the gap once more."

shares
comments
Carlos Sainz Jr explains 'very strange' Germany safety car incident
Previous article

Carlos Sainz Jr explains 'very strange' Germany safety car incident

Next article

Fernando Alonso: 70% of McLaren's work for 2019 car developments

Fernando Alonso: 70% of McLaren's work for 2019 car developments
Why there was no case to answer in Aston’s latest F1 copycat saga Plus

Why there was no case to answer in Aston’s latest F1 copycat saga

The appearance of a revised Aston Martin in Spain caused controversy but PAT SYMONDS explains why the FIA investigation found the Silverstone team had no case to answer

Why it's Red Bull that really leads a three-way fight so far at Silverstone Plus

Why it's Red Bull that really leads a three-way fight so far at Silverstone

After a slow start to Friday at Silverstone, all the Formula 1 teams had to effectively cram in a day’s worth of practice into one hour. But there was still plenty to learn and while Ferrari topped the times, a three-way battle is brewing ahead of the British Grand Prix

Formula 1
Jul 2, 2022
Why the future is bright for the British GP Plus

Why the future is bright for the British GP

It wasn’t so long ago the situation looked bleak at Silverstone with the future of the British Grand Prix under threat. But a transformation has seen it restored to one of the most important races on the Formula 1 calendar, with bigger and better to come

Formula 1
Jul 1, 2022
Could mixed fortunes for F1's leading Brits turn around at Silverstone? Plus

Could mixed fortunes for F1's leading Brits turn around at Silverstone?

For the first time in many years, none of the local racers starts among the favourites for the British Grand Prix. But George Russell, Lewis Hamilton and Lando Norris could have reasons for optimism

Formula 1
Jun 30, 2022
Verstappen exclusive: Why F1’s champion isn’t fazed by Silverstone return Plus

Verstappen exclusive: Why F1’s champion isn’t fazed by Silverstone return

Max Verstappen is the world’s number one racing driver… and he’s determined to keep it that way. Speaking exclusively to GP Racing's OLEG KARPOV, the Red Bull driver explains why he’s relishing the 2022 championship battle with Charles Leclerc – and why he’s not worried about returning to Silverstone, the scene of the biggest accident of his career last year

Formula 1
Jun 30, 2022
Why Red Bull’s RB17 hypercar can help its F1 team Plus

Why Red Bull’s RB17 hypercar can help its F1 team

On Tuesday, Red Bull laid out its plans to develop and build a new hypercar - the RB17 - penned by Adrian Newey. As the project itself sates Newey as a creative outlet, it also offers Red Bull's Formula 1 team a number of new and exciting avenues to pursue

Formula 1
Jun 29, 2022
What to expect from Mercedes as F1 returns to Silverstone Plus

What to expect from Mercedes as F1 returns to Silverstone

OPINION: The British Grand Prix is a home event for Lewis Hamilton and George Russell, with their Mercedes team based just a few miles away too. But there’s another reason why the Silver Arrows squad is eager to arrive at Silverstone this weekend, which may help it fix its remaining problems with its 2022 Formula 1 challenger

Formula 1
Jun 29, 2022
The “solemn promise” that cost quiet hero Brooks an F1 title Plus

The “solemn promise” that cost quiet hero Brooks an F1 title

After two terrifying crashes, one of the best British racers of the 1950s retired before his career peaked. But that’s why GP Racing’s MAURICE HAMILTON was able to speak to Tony Brooks in 2014. Like his friend Stirling Moss, Brooks was regarded as one of the best drivers never to have won the world championship. Here, as our tribute to Brooks who died last month, is that interview in full

Formula 1
Jun 27, 2022