Scuderia Toro Rosso, commonly known as Toro Rosso or by its abbreviation STR, is an Italian Formula One racing team. It is one of two F1 teams owned by Austrian beverage company Red Bull, the other being Red Bull Racing. Toro Rosso functions as a junior team to Red Bull Racing, with the aim of developing the skills of promising drivers for the senior team. Since 2010, the team has competed entirely independently of their sister team.
The team made its racing debut in the 2006 Formula One season, after Paul Stoddart sold his remaining interest in the Minardi team at the end of 2005 to Red Bull’s owner, Dietrich Mateschitz, who subsequently struck a 50/50 joint-ownership deal with former F1 driver, Gerhard Berger, before the start of the season. In late November 2008, Red Bull regained total ownership of Toro Rosso after buying back Berger’s share of the team.
From 2007 to 2013, Toro Rosso used Ferrari V8 engines, taking over the contract that their senior team broke from at the end of 2006 to switch engine builders to Renault. For 2014, Toro Rosso switched to Renault engines as well, but in 2016 returned to using Ferrari power, and will switch back to Renault in 2017. The team principal is Franz Tost, formerly of BMW’s motor sport division.
Vitantonio Liuzzi scored the team’s first point in its first season at the 2006 United States Grand Prix. The team’s first and only pole position, podium and victory were scored by Sebastian Vettel at the 2008 Italian Grand Prix.
The team’s set 2008 driver lineup was Sebastian Vettel, third driver for BMW Sauber in 2006 before switching to a race seat at Toro Rosso midway through the 2007 season, and Sébastien Bourdais, the four-time winner of the Champ Car World Series. For the 2009 season, Sébastien Buemi took Vettel’s seat when he moved to the Red Bull team, while Bourdais was dropped after the German Grand Prix, following a series of poor performances that had only scored him two points. Jaime Alguersuari took over Bourdais’ seat at the Hungarian Grand Prix, and kept the seat for the remaining part of the year. Both Alguersuari and Buemi raced for the team for all of the 2010 and 2011 seasons. It was announced on 14 December 2011, that Daniel Ricciardo and Jean-Éric Vergne would be the team’s drivers for the 2012 season. At the 2013 Italian Grand Prix it was announced that Daniel Ricciardo had been chosen to succeed Mark Webber at Red Bull Racing. For 2014, Toro Rosso retained Jean-Éric Vergne and signed newcomer Daniil Kvyat. Kvyat spent one season with Toro Rosso before being promoted to Red Bull, and the team elected to overhaul their lineup by signing Carlos Sainz Jr. and Max Verstappen, who in 2015 became the youngest driver in Formula One history at just 17 years old.