Toro Rosso targeting an F1 podium with new car, the STR11

Toro Rosso team principal Franz Tost believes a podium finish is possible this season after unveiling its newly-liveried car for the 2016 Formula 1 season

Toro Rosso targeting an F1 podium with new car, the STR11

In 10 previous seasons in F1, Toro Rosso has only scored one top-three result, Sebastian Vettel's shock victory in the 2008 Italian Grand Prix.

GALLERY: Toro Rosso launches STR11 livery

Max Verstappen twice came close to a podium result last season, finishing fourth in Hungary and the United States, and Tost is expecting to go one better this year with the Ferrari-powered STR11.

"I expect we can achieve a podium this year after getting so close to it last year," said Tost when asked about a realistic target this season.

"I hope the new car works well and is reliable and the team and drivers do a good job. Therefore a podium position should be possible.

"Overall, I expect a successful season because we are much better prepared in
many different ways than the years before.

"I'm convinced the new car, which has quite a successful predecessor, will be another big step forward. I'm really optimistic about the season ahead."

Tost recognises his team is slightly compromised by the late decision last year to switch from a Renault power unit to a 2015-spec Ferrari system.

"The decision will inevitably have a small effect on car performance because if you have more time for the design stage then you can possibly come up with better solutions," added Tost.

"I see the STR11 as another step forward. The STR10 was quite a competitive car last year, and I think we can continue improving.

Horner: Toro Rosso will beat Red Bull early in F1 season

"The downside for the Faenza-based squad is that while other squads will receive updated power units during the season, there will be no development on the engine Ferrari finished 2015 with.

It means for Toro Rosso to remain competitive, and to achieve Tost's aims, any improvements will have to come via aerodynamics.

"Clearly, it will be very important to work on chassis development in the strongest way possible," said technical director James Key.

"We will be the only team with a year-old spec power unit and it will not be further developed from what we have now.

"All other teams will have PU development so we will need to compensate as best as possible with chassis development."

Key at least feels he and his team have improved on one area of weakness from last year.

"When it comes to this year's chassis, we wanted to concentrate on improving the low-speed cornering capability of the car," added Key.

"Last year's car was a big step forward and particularly good in medium and high-speed corners.

"But we have felt our lower-speed performance was not as competitive as we would like.

"That has been one area that has led to a change in approach for our 2016 car."

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