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Toyota 'optimistic' after Bahrain showing

Jarno Trulli and the entire Toyota F1 team heads for this weekend's Spanish Grand Prix confident that it can be the one where years of near misses can finally be laid to rest with a breakthrough victory.

A front row lock-out in Bahrain at the end of April underlined just how much progress Toyota has made with its TF109 and, albeit aided by one of the early double-decker diffusers, the car has been a frontrunner from the start of the season. Although disappointed not to be able to convert pole position into that elusive win last time out, Trulli remains upbeat heading to a circuit that every team knows well.

"It's good to be coming back to Europe again after the long-haul races as this makes things a little easier for everyone," the Italian veteran mused, aware that upgrades and quick responses will be easier from closer to home, "I am enjoying this season because we are consistently fighting at the front, so I am really looking forward to the Spanish Grand Prix.

"The opening races of the season have shown the potential we have in our new car - to get pole position and the fastest race lap in Bahrain was a good achievement which gives us great encouragement. We'll see how it works out in Barcelona, but we have to be optimistic after our strong performances so far."

Despite opting for Bahrain among its pre-season testing venues, Toyota joined the rest of the field in running at the Circuit de Catalunya, but Trulli reckons that that outing was so long ago that its results are likely to be meaningless this weekend.

"We tested in Barcelona before the season, but I have to admit it's unusual to be preparing for the race having not driven at the track for a couple of months," he reflected, "In the past, we have generally tested there just before the race so everything was quite predictable, but it could be different this time."

Toyota currently lies third in the constructors' championship, having claimed three podium finishes in four grands prix and, while Trulli has recorded two of those - in Melbourne and Bahrain - to go with pole and fastest lap in the latest round, team-mate Timo Glock has maintained a 100 per cent scoring record in 2009, despite twice starting at the rear of the field.

"Barcelona is one of the tracks I know best after all the testing and racing I've done there over the years, so I'm feeling optimistic going into the Spanish Grand Prix," the German noted, "I have scored points in all the races so far - and only two other drivers have done that - and I certainly expect to continue that run this weekend.

"I just hope to score a few more than in Bahrain - it was disappointing only to finish seventh after starting from the front row, but the potential of the car is clear for everyone to see. That motivates everyone to keep pushing hard because we can see there is the possibility for some great results. We have an upgrade to the car this weekend so, hopefully, that can bring something extra."

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Jarno Trulli (ITA) Toyota TF109, Bahrain F1 Grand Prix, Sakhir, Bahrain, 24-26th, April, 2009
03.09.2016 -  Jarno Trulli (ITA) and Charlie Whiting (GBR), Race director and safety delegate
03.09.2016 - Charlie Whiting (GBR), Race director and safety delegate  and Jarno Trulli (ITA)
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03.09.2016 - Free Practice 3,  Jarno Trulli (ITA)
03.09.2016 - Free Practice 3, Jarno Trulli (ITA)
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