Sebastien Buemi says his aim is to become a regular points scorer during the 2011 F1 season having admitted he 'didn't have enough' last year.
Toro Rosso's new STR6 has been a solid performer so far during pre-season testing, with test and reserve driver Daniel Ricciardo in particular having produced some eye catching performances in the car.
With expectations high that the team will exceed its performance from 2010, the pressure is on both Buemi and team-mate Jaime Alguersuari to impress but Buemi insisted he didn't view 2011 as a make or break year.
“I know that everybody thinks this will be an important season, but for me I don't think that it will be more important than any other season,” he told the official F1 website. “It is my third season now with Toro Rosso and clearly we want to make a step forward. We expect a lot so let's wait and see what we are able to achieve.
“It is always difficult to say what it will be like before you go to the first race. To read anything into the test times is always like reading a crystal ball, but this year it's even more difficult with four different compounds of tyres. You never really know what the others are up to. We are really aiming to end up ahead of one of the other teams that were in front of us last season - P7 in the constructors' championship would be our objective.”
In the past, Sebastian Vettel used Toro Rosso as a springboard into a race seat with Red Bull Racing, with Alguersuari having already stated that he was keen to try and follow the German in graduating to the defending champions in the coming years.
However, Buemi said it was too soon to tell what the future may – adding that it was important to simply focus on the job at hand.
“I don't want to speak too much about the future,” he said. “If you are driving for Toro Rosso you are aiming for good results and then one day to jump into the Red Bull, but my objective is to do a really good job for Toro Rosso and then we see what will happen.
“Obviously Red Bull - and myself - want to see results and improvements. If it does not happen we have to sit down and think what we have to do to change that. Right now we have to concentrate on the job ahead of us. Obviously you cannot judge the performance of someone only on the actual results - you need to compare it to his team mate and compare it to the speed of the car. If, for example, in the past you were sitting in a Minardi and qualifying 3.5 seconds from pole position it meant a really good time, so you cannot expect people to win if the car is not good enough.
“Red Bull on the other hand is really good in that respect because they look into the details of the performance and from there they will make a decision on the future of a driver. Let's wait and see. I am pushing as hard as I can and I am prepared as well as possible, so let's wait for the season to start.”