James Key extends his contract as Toro Rosso technical director

James Key extends his contract as Toro Rosso technical director

James Key
James Key

Scuderia Toro Rosso announced that James Key has extended his contract to stay with the team in the role of Technical Director.

The 45 year-old Englishman has been with the Faenza-based Formula 1 team for the past five years, since joining in September 2012. That work has involved Key overseeing the concept, design and manufacture of the Scuderia Toro Rosso cars from STR8 to this year’s STR12, with work now well underway on the 2018 STR13. In his time with the team, personnel numbers have increased substantially and, apart from the actual task of producing a new car each year, Key has also played a pivotal role in getting the right people on board, and ensuring the smooth running of operations in Faenza and at the wind tunnel in Bicester.

Team principal Franz Tost said:

“Formula 1 is a team sport, but one in which an individual can still make a difference. So far, in his time with us, James has proved that he can indeed make that difference, leading the technical side of the operation. Not only has he been adept at producing chassis-aero packages that are well regarded throughout the paddock, he has also shown the management skills necessary to get the most out of all the various departments that work together both here in Faenza and in Bicester. I am therefore delighted that James will be with us for the foreseeable future to continue this fruitful process.”

James Key added:

“I am delighted to continue with Toro Rosso and remain part of the Red Bull family. This is a team which I have great respect for and have thoroughly enjoyed working with for the past 5 years. Now I look forwards to continuing our project into the future. STR is unique, facing the challenges of being spread over two countries and fulfilling the roles of both a team in its own right. And [it is] an important part of the Red Bull driver programme. They are challenges that the team takes in its stride and, whilst doing so, continues to grow and improve year on year.”

“Most importantly, the people I have had the pleasure to work with at STR are second to none. Professional, ambitious and focussed, they have all worked incredibly hard to improve the team’s performance. And [they] will continue that hard work with the same dedication and optimism in the coming years too. I would like to thank Franz Tost and Red Bull for their continued support and confidence. We have more work to do. I look forwards to taking the next steps with Toro Rosso towards our goals.”

James Key works in Formula One since the late 90s of the 20th century. In 1998 he became race engineer for Takuma Sato in Jordan. After that he changed different departments until becoming head of Vehicle Dynamics. In 2005 Key became technical director in the team, which Midland had already bought. In 2010 the British engineer went to Sauber as technical director. He left in 2012 and in September became technical director at Toro Rosso.