When asked how much of a miss the 67-year-old will be for the sport, he said: “I’ll say tremendously. I think for the team he’s been everything. Starting off in the Toro Rosso days, that’s where I started, well my first full season in F1.
“I remember quite vividly the first meeting I had in his office. I kind of bounced in with a smile and I think he looked at me, tried to prepare me for what’s ahead! It’s a serious sport and it’s a tough old world.
“I think he was very honest with me as well,” he added. “But it made me, a little bit the same as with Helmut, it made me mature a little quicker and ultimately grow up.
“I think Franz has always been really involved. He’s in every debrief, he’ll normally speak as well in the debriefs and give some analysis or advice or anything he’s seen. He’s fully involved in it and it’s his passion. It’s been everything that’s given him drive for so many years.
“I hope he can enjoy putting his feet up a little bit next year. I’m not sure fully what that’s going to entail for him! But I really hope he’s able to enjoy some R&R.
“A lot of good memories and actually really nice for me personally to come back to the team and be here for that, I guess his farewell.”
Daniel Riccardo delivers a glowing tribute to Franz Tost
Tost began his career in F1 in 2000 when he joined Williams alongside Ralf Schumacher, whom he had met whilst he ran his F3 team WTS in 1993. He worked with Williams’ engine supplier BMW as Track Operations Manager.
In 2006, he was appointed as the team principal of Toro Rosso after Red Bull had bought Minardi and would spend 18 years with the team, which served as a launching pad for Red Bull’s young talent, such as Ricciardo, four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel – who achieved his and the team’s first ever win in F1 at Monza in 2008 – and the reigning three-time champion Max Verstappen.
Tost remained as team principal after the team’s rebranding to AlphaTauri and oversaw their second and, to date last victory in the sport with Pierre Gasly in 2020, again coming at Monza.
He achieved a best finish of sixth in the constructors’ championship in 2008, 2019 and 2021.
The team is sat eighth in the standings heading into this weekend’s race, sitting just seven points behind Williams in seventh, five points ahead of Alfa Romeo and nine ahead of Haas.
GPFans is a multi-platform, multi-language brand dedicated to Formula One coverage. We bring you all the ins and outs of the sport, 24/7, everything from up-to-the-minute news and features to the latest viral stories and clips.
We believe that a new generation of exciting, outspoken drivers will make F1 more popular than ever before, and we want to give our users access to as much of their heroes as possible, on and off the track. From Lewis Hamilton to Max Verstappen, Daniel Ricciardo to Sebastian Vettel, we provide in-depth analysis of every every Grand Prix in the season, from Australia to Abu Dhabi.
With Formula One under the new ownership of Liberty Media, how the sport is being covered is evolving, and GPFans will look to be at the heart of this progression into new media, as one of the fastest-growing sites covering the king of motorsports.