Toyota team-mates flagging fortunes

In 2009, Timo Glock and Jarno Trulli locked out the front row with Toyota at Bahrain, and that memory must feel like a lifetime ago for the veteran drivers, who are now finding their careers stalling at the back of the field, being out-performed by younger team-mates.

And it’s hard to recover a F1 career if you spend too long plodding around at the back of the field, so can their careers recover from the thrashing they’re currently getting? Let’s have a look…

When Trulli’s team-mate Heikki Kovalainen posted the 18th-fastest time in the opening phase of qualifying for the Turkish Grand Prix, the result created a rather unattractive blot on Jarno Trulli’s F1 record: it was the first time in the Italian’s 15-year F1 career that he had been out-qualified four times on the trot.

Trulli is one of the sport’s elder statesmen, approaching 250 Grands Prix in a career Jarno Trulliwhere he has been recognised as one of the best single-lap specialists ever to grace the sport.

But a season-and-a-bit with the new Team Lotus outfit has taken some of the gloss off Trulli’s stats, and last year he was out-qualified by a team-mate at Monaco for the first time in his career. This year, he is yet to out-perform Heikki Kovalainen in qualifying.

It was of little surprise that the moment made news in Kovalainen’s homeland, and Trulli was none too impressed when confronted with the news by the Turun Sanomat newspaper.

“But this is also the first time in my career I have had a succession of technical problems in qualifying,” he retorted, while his team management confirmed that his adjustable rear wing was playing up in qualifying.

Another increasingly disillusioned driver in the paddock if Timo Glock, who was clearly disappointed that the 1.5-second-per-lap gain predicted in his MVR-02’s new aero package failed to materialise.

Timo Glock The new package – featuring a Red Bull-styled exhaust – failed to deliver results, and Timo ended up qualifying slower than team-mate Jérôme d’Ambrosio, who was not running all of the upgrade parts.

“Every weekend we seem to start [from scratch] at the beginning,” Glock is quoted as saying by the Die Welt newspaper.

“I somehow have the feeling that we could save all the test driving and just have a coffee instead.”

And Glock’s mood improved little when he was unable to make the start of yesterday’s Grand Prix after his car suffered a gearbox problem on his reconnaissance lap to the dummy grid.

[Images via LAT, Sutton Images and XPB]

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.