Toro Rosso re-branded as AlphaTauri in 2020, and the team took their first win in twelve years. Here are the facts and statistics from AlphaTauri’s 2020 F1 season!
The Red Bull junior team enjoyed a successful campaign in their first year under their new AlphaTauri name. The team scored 107 points this season – the most in their entire history dating back to their Minardi origins. Despite this, AlphaTauri finished one position below where Toro Rosso finished in the 2019 Constructors’ Championship. 2020 marked the fifth time in the last seven seasons that the team have ended the season in seventh place.
The highlight of AlphaTauri’s year was Pierre Gasly’s victory in the Italian Grand Prix. It was the team’s second win; their first since Sebastian Vettel won the Italian Grand Prix twelve years previously. AlphaTauri scored in all but two races this year, and enjoyed a streak of ten successive races with at least one car finishing in a points-paying position – the longest such streak in the team’s entire history.
While Gasly remains with AlphaTauri for 2021, Daniil Kvyat will be replaced by rookie Yuki Tsunoda. Tsunoda finished third in the F2 championship in 2020, recording three race wins. Will the team be able to continue their impressive run of form with their new line-up?
A STATISTIC FROM EVERY GRAND PRIX
Austria: The AlphaTauri name made its maiden appearance at the 2020 Austrian Grand Prix. This race was the first since the 2005 Chinese Grand Prix to not feature the Toro Rosso name on the grid. In qualifying, the Red Bull junior team surpassed McLaren as the team to have had the most Q2 exits at the Austrian Grand Prix. Daniil Kvyat and Pierre Gasly recorded the team’s seventh and eighth Q2 eliminations at the Austrian Grand Prix.
Styria: Pierre Gasly reached Q3 and qualified in eighth at the Styrian Grand Prix. It was the first time a driver for the Red Bull junior team reached Q3 at the Red Bull Ring since Carlos Sainz did so in 2017.
Hungary: Qualifying in seventeenth place, Daniil Kvyat became the first AlphaTauri driver to be eliminated in Q1 at the Hungarian Grand Prix since Daniel Ricciardo, who qualified eighteenth for Toro Rosso in 2012. Pierre Gasly was the only retirement from the race. Impressively, this was only the second time that the team have recorded a retirement at the Hungarian Grand Prix in the last ten seasons.
Britain: With seventh place, Pierre Gasly recorded the team’s best ever British Grand Prix result. Their previous best Silverstone finish was eighth, recorded by Daniel Ricciardo in 2013 and Carlos Sainz in 2016.
70th Anniversary: Pierre Gasly recorded his team’s second-best Silverstone qualifying result. Gasly qualified seventh for AlphaTauri at the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix. The only time that has been beaten at Silverstone was at the 2013 British Grand Prix, when Daniel Ricciardo qualified fifth for Toro Rosso.
Spain: AlphaTauri recorded a similar result at the 2020 Spanish Grand Prix as Toro Rosso did in 2019, with one driver finishing ninth and the other failing to score.
Belgium: Pierre Gasly’s eighth place made this the eighth Belgian Grand Prix in the last nine years in which the Red Bull junior team scored points. Gasly recorded his best Spa finish, having finished ninth on his previous two appearances.
Italy: The Red Bull junior team took their second race win at the 2020 Italian Grand Prix. Their first came at Monza twelve years ago, when Sebastian Vettel scored his maiden win. The Red Bull junior team now have as many victories at the Italian Grand Prix as their senior team. Though Toro Rosso have previously won, AlphaTauri won only their eighth race as a constructor. That’s a record which is bettered by only Alfa Romeo, Wolf, Brawn GP, March, Tyrrell and Matra. AlphaTauri are the sixth team to have won with Honda power, after the Honda works team, Williams, Lotus, McLaren and Red Bull. This was the first victory for Honda power at Monza since Ayrton Senna won for McLaren in 1992.
Tuscany: For only the fourth time in 2020, neither AlphaTauri driver reached Q3 at the Tuscan Grand Prix. Pierre Gasly recorded the team’s third Q1 exit of the year. Daniil Kvyat finished in seventh place, ensuring this was the sixth consecutive race in which the team scored.
Russia: Pierre Gasly qualified in ninth place, marking the first time that a driver for the Red Bull junior team reached Q3 at the Russian Grand Prix since Max Verstappen did so in 2016. Before the 2020 Russian Grand Prix, the Red Bull junior team had scored only two points at Sochi Autodrom. Daniil Kvyat finished eighth in the 2020 race, with Pierre Gasly finishing ninth, meaning the team picked up six points. Kvyat recorded the team’s best ever result at the circuit. It was the first time the Russian scored at his home event with his current team. His only other points here came with Red Bull, with whom he finished fifth in 2015.
Eifel: Both AlphaTauri drivers were eliminated in Q2 at the Eifel Grand Prix. While Daniil Kvyat was yet to reach Q3 this season, his thirteenth place in qualifying for the 2020 Eifel Grand Prix marked the first time since the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix that he failed to qualify in the top twelve. Finishing in sixth place, Pierre Gasly recorded the Red Bull junior team’s first ever points at the Nurburgring. The team’s previous best result here was eleventh, recorded by Scott Speed in 2006. If you include the team’s history as Minardi, Gasly also equalled their best result here. Marc Gene finished sixth for the team in the 1999 European Grand Prix. The Eifel Grand Prix marked the first time that this team scored at eight consecutive races in any guise.
Portugal: Pierre Gasly finished the Portuguese Grand Prix in fifth place, making this the ninth consecutive race in which AlphaTauri have scored points. That extended the team’s best streak of points scoring races in their entire history. This was the 24th time that this team has finished in the top five since joining the sport as Minardi in 1985. Minardi recorded ten top five finishes, Toro Rosso finished in the top five on twelve occasions and Gasly has recorded both of AlphaTauri’s top five results so far.
Emilia Romagna: For only the second time in his career, Pierre Gasly qualified in the top four. It marked the Red Bull junior team’s best qualifying result since both Sebastian Vettel and Sebastien Bourdais qualified in the top four at the 2008 Italian Grand Prix. AlphaTauri and Toro Rosso’s roots can be traced back to Minardi, who first competed in F1 in 1985. In the team’s entire history, there have been only five races in which one of their drivers has started a Grand Prix in the top four grid positions. Pierluigi Martini did so at the 1989 Spanish and Australian Grands Prix and the 1990 United States Grand Prix; Sebastian Vettel and Sebastien Bourdais both started in the top four at the 2008 Italian Grand Prix; and Pierre Gasly will start fourth at the 2020 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.
Turkey: Neither AlphaTauri driver scored in the Turkish Grand Prix, bringing an end to their streak of ten consecutive points finishes – the longest such run in the team’s entire history.
Bahrain: For the first time at the Bahrain Grand Prix, both of the Red Bull junior team’s cars reached Q3. Prior to 2020, the former Toro Rosso team had only three Q3 appearances at the circuit (Daniel Ricciardo in 2012, Carlos Sainz in 2015 and Pierre Gasly in 2018). While Gasly qualified eighth, out-qualifying his team-mate for a sixth consecutive race, Daniil Kvyat reached Q3 in Bahrain for the first time in his career and qualified tenth.
Sakhir: Pierre Gasly qualified in ninth place and was out-qualified by Kvyat at the Sakhir Grand Prix, ending a streak of six races in which Gasly out-qualified Kvyat. With both of the Red Bull junior team’s drivers in Q3 for the last two weekends, this was the first time that AlphaTauri/Toro Rosso have reached Q3 with both cars at two consecutive races since the 2015 Spanish and Monaco Grands Prix. Daniil Kvyat finished in seventh place. This was the fourth successive F1 race in Bahrain in which the Red Bull junior team has scored.
Abu Dhabi: Pierre Gasly and Daniil Kvyat both qualified in the top ten for AlphaTauri, making this the first time that both of the Red Bull junior team’s cars reached Q3 at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. Prior to 2020, Toro Rosso had recorded four Q3 appearances at the track. This was the first time since the end of the 2008 season that both AlphaTauri (Toro Rosso) drivers reached Q3 at three consecutive races. Pierre Gasly finished in eighth place for AlphaTauri, equalling the Red Bull junior team’s best ever result at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. The team last finished eighth here in the inaugural race in 2009, with Sebastien Buemi in eighth for Toro Rosso.
After graduating in 2015 with a First Class honours degree in English Language and Literature, Nicky Haldenby, a lifelong fan of Formula 1, founded the Lights Out F1 Blog in 2016. Now in its sixth season, the blog has become a firm fan-favourite, delving deep into the sport’s history books and lifting the cover on unusual F1 statistics. Nicky also writes at F1Destinations and Motorsport Guides. In 2017 and 2018, he wrote for Badger GP. Nicky is also the host of the F1 Rewind Podcast and can be heard as the resident stats man on the 2 Soft Compounds Podcast.