Toro Rosso Surprised with Buemi's Performances

Rookie Sebastien Buemi's impressive start of the season left many F1 observers open-mouthed. Just to be clear on that, Buemi recorded two point finishes in only 3 starts – the chaotical Malaysian Grand Prix hardly counts, as it was ran on heavy rain and impossible conditions for an F1 rookie – and made his first Q3 appearance at only his 3rd attempt, in China.

The Swiss driver tested a lot for Scuderia Toro Rosso and Red Bull Racing before the 2009 season, as in-season testing was then allowed by the FIA. That gave Buemi plenty of time to develop a good relationship with the F1 car. Although Toro Rosso have been one of the last teams to launch their 2009 challenger, Buemi tested last year's machinery heavily through the winter.

Nonetheless, he was not expected to score any points in the first half of the season, let alone in the first 3 races, as confirmed by team principal Franz Tost.

We did not expect him to score points during the first three races. We expected him to increase his performance from race to race and then he can score in the second half of the season,” said Tost in an interview for British magazine AUTOSPORT.

Although he made a huge impression at his very debut in the championship, Tost insisted Buemi will be asked to double or even triple his points in the second part of the season, as part of Toro Rosso's development programme for 2009.

But we are not dissatisfied if it's in the first half of the season as long as the amount of points is doubled or tripled in the second half. In China he did a good job. In really difficult circumstances, he didn't make a major mistake. Once he did touch Sebastian Vettel, but touching a Red Bull car is all part of the education process with Toro Rosso! If he goes on to win a race after doing this then it's fine,” added Tost.

Buemi is currently 12th overall in the drivers standings, 2 points clear of teammate and F1 sophomore Sebastien Bourdais.
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