Another season working together is just round the corner, how would you sum up the relationship between Honda and our team?
TT: “2020 is our third consecutive season with this team and we are very much looking forward to it. Ever since we first began working together, back in the winter of 2017, it was immediately obvious to all of us at Honda that we were dealing with an organisation that was keen to share everything with us and even to understand the Japanese way of working. It is a true partnership and right from the 2018 season, it began to deliver results. Last year, in its final season as Toro Rosso, it had its best result for over a decade, the highlights being the third and second place in Germany and Brazil respectively.”
What factors led to that obvious progression?
TT: “Those results came thanks to improvements on the chassis, aero and PU side. But it also owed a lot to the excellent working relationship, when every problem was an opportunity to learn and every success was shared between us. Supplying two teams last year, with both of them part of the same family, linked by Red Bull Technology, allowed us to up the speed of our development and that is something that will carry over into this season. Everyone at our facilities in Sakura, Japan and Milton Keynes, UK has been working very hard to get even more power out of our PU. Of course, power is nothing without reliability and this year, that is even more challenging as the calendar will be the longest ever in F1, with 22 races.”
Can we do even better this year?
TT: “The technical regulations relating to the PU have hardly changed since last year. Therefore, we have been able to make progress based on the experience we gained across all four of our cars in 2019. I believe we can make a step forward and our aim is to obtain even better results than we did last year. In any sport, your performance can only be judged in relation to that of your competitors, so until we start racing, it’s impossible to predict just how successful we can be. I’m sure the new name, Scuderia AlphaTauri will generate a lot of interest, but behind it, I know everyone shares the same fighting spirit that has served us well over the past two years together.”