Sidepodcast // All for F1 and F1 for all

Speed limit // Toro Rosso have a relationship problem with one of their drivers

Published by Christine

Toro Rosso Drivers

Because F1 needs just a little bit more controversy right now, the Toro Rosso family have decided to have a serious falling out.

The European GP was not a great race for the team, to put it mildly. Both drivers spun off during the deluge of rain during the first few laps and that was it, the weekend was over. The press release at the time simply read "nothing to say today."

If only they'd left it at that, eh?

Instead, we've been hearing reports of an assault on Scott Speed and some kind of secret plan to oust both Speed and Liuzzi from their race seat. There's been some speculation already (something I may be guilty of...) about a change in drivers at TR and it obviously hasn't escaped Speed's notice.

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to read the press and know that Franz and Gerhard are pushing like hell to get rid of me and Tonio.

- Scott Speed

It most certainly does not, Scott.

So, with the knowledge that the relationship between Speed and his team were already going through a bit of a rocky patch, this weekend's race disaster must have been the icing on the cake, the straw that broke the camel's back, and any other cliché you can think of.

It's important to point out that Franz Tost has denied any wrongdoing, but today Speed's decided to break his silence and talk to SpeedTV about what happened after he made his way back to the pit lane - minus his car.

After that I just turned away and walked towards the garage, and I guess he [Tost] must have caught up behind me. When he reached me, he hit me in the middle of the back with a closed fist. Everyone in the team saw it. As I was leaving the garage he then followed me behind the partition, where none of the mechanics could see. He grabbed me from the front of my shirt, jerked me around, ripping a little bit my fire suit, and pushed me against the wall. After that my only response was to back up in the middle of the garage and ask him if he wanted to hit me in front of everyone else.

- Scott Speed

This kind of stuff makes me very uncomfortable. I guess this is what happens in the heat of the moment, and there's no doubt that F1 moments can be more heated than any other sport. But, like I say, Tost is denying everything. Although...

After the race Franz spent 15 minutes apologizing for his behavior, because it was clear to everyone that he was way out of line.

- Scott Speed

Apologising for not doing anything? Hmmm. I wonder. Anyway, Speed hasn't spoken to anyone since Sunday, and he doesn't sound like he particularly wants to, either.

As far as my future in F1 is concerned, you couldn't pay me enough money to race for those two people again. If it was with a different team, that would be great, but I would also like to do something else with Red Bull, even if it was outside F1.

- Scott Speed

I had a high amount of scepticism when I first read this story, but when I got to this bit, I had a rethink. Racing drivers dream about getting F1 seats from their earliest birthdays. Most of them would give their right arm for an F1 contract (although, I don't know how that would work logistically). So, to give up your job halfway through the season? That has to be a proper argument with your boss. Or a well paid NASCAR opportunity.