Haas’ Romain Grosjean has another mid-field rival to contend with but ultimately he sees Toro Rosso-Honda’s form as “amazing” for Formula 1.

The doubters outweighed the rest of the F1 paddock when it came to assessing Toro Rosso’s chances of performing this season following its switch to Honda power.

But Pierre Gasly’s impressive P4 finish last Sunday in Bahrain confirmed the Japanese manufacturer’s progress as well as the fact that Toro Rosso will likely be a force to be reckoned with this year for the title of “best of the rest”.

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“I wasn’t happy they were in front of us, but I’m happy that Honda, with a good collaboration with Toro Rosso, managed to get such a good result,” Grosjean said.

“Qualifying everyone was like ‘oh in the race they’re gonna fall down’, but actually no, they finished fourth.

“For Formula 1 in general it is amazing. It shows a constructor, like the Haas project, can be successful after three years. I think it’s great for Formula 1. It shows you can do it.”

Another man who also rejoiced at Toro Rosos’s great result in Bahrain was Carlos Sainz, who spent his formative F1 years with the Faenza-based squad.

“I saw the mechanics, I went down to shake hands with them and congratulate them,” said the Spaniard.

“It’s good for them, they deserve it – they’ve pushed hard over the winter to get that engine back into the car, redesign the car. I think it’s a good story for Formula 1.”

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