Debut & Toro Rosso (2008-2009)
Bourdais who entered F1 at the beginning of the 2008 season, was already one of the most successful Champ car drivers ever, having won 4 back to back titles from 2004 to 2007. Thus his rather late entry into Formula 1, at the age of 29 saw him driving for Toro Rosso.
His debut race saw him rewarded with two world championship points, after not finishing but still being classified for completing more than 90% of the race distance. However as the season rolled on Bourdais was beginning to be constantly out performed by his younger team-mate Sebastian Vettel.
A strong race result at 2008 Belgium GP saw him pick up another couple of points. It could have been more, if it weren’t for a last minute rain storm that saw 4 other cars go pass him in one lap. His best ever qualifying came at the next race, which saw him line up 4th at Monza. However an electric problem stalled his car and the chance for a great result had gone.
Bourdais future looked in doubt at the end of the 2008 season as he was not confirmed for 2009. Several test sessions where he was pitted against other drivers such as Takuma Sato & Sebastien Buemi did not help his battle to retain his seat. However early on in 2009 it was confirmed that the Frenchman would again drive for Toro Rosso this year alongside the already signed Sebastien Buemi.
He had a troubled 2009 for Toro Rosso and struggled to assert himself against his rookie teammate. With that, and a seemingly sour relationship with boss Franz Tost, he was dropped after only 9 rounds of the season, being replaced by Spaniard Jaime Alguersuari.
Shortly after being sacked at Toro Rosso Bourdais released a statement of his dissapointment and that he is considering legal action against the Faenza based team, citing a breach of his contract.