Jaime Alguersuari has confessed that although he has 'nothing against' the Australian, he is frustrated that Mark Webber's re-signing by F1 pace-setters Red Bull Racing has once again 'closed the doors' at the world championship leaders – as he revealed that he has not even discussed next season with his employers Scuderia Toro Rosso yet.
Both Alguersuari and Sébastien Buemi entered F1 2011 under the strict instruction from Toro Rosso team principal Franz Tost and Red Bull motorsport advisor Dr. Helmut Marko to raise their game or else face eviction, with the spectre of highly-regarded Red Bull protégés
Daniel Ricciardo and Jean-Eric Vergne lurking menacingly in the wings.
Despite having been tipped to outperform Buemi this season, in the initial stages, Alguersuari's form was distinctly lacklustre, whilst his team-mate – ostensibly regarded as the more under pressure – impressed with his consistency and points-scoring zeal. In recent races, however, that situation has turned around, with the Spaniard troubling the points-scorers no fewer than five times in the last seven outings – on four of those occasions, having dropped out in the Q1 phase of qualifying.
Praising Buemi as 'one of the best team-mates I have had in my life' and a driver who 'deserves to be there', it is clear that the man who two years ago became the youngest-ever starter in a grand prix at the age of just 19 at the Hungaroring reckons the pair should both be retained into F1 2012 – and hopefully, he concedes, with a better car.
“So far, I have no place for next year,” the 21-year-old told Spanish newspaper El Mundo
. “I haven't spoken to anyone at Toro Rosso about next season. What I want is a car that allows me to be at the front and winning races, because I think I deserve it. I don't like fighting to be 16th. I don't make excuses, but [Sebastian] Vettel can brake 20 metres later with his car.”
Regarding his future, Alguersuari insists he is relaxed, telling sports daily AS
that he is 'not nervous as it has always worked out for me' and that 'from the age of 15, I have never known what I will be doing [the following year] until the end' – although he does reflect on Webber's contract extension at the 'parent' team that 'I have nothing against him, but it closes the doors at Red Bull and also stops the flow from the junior team'.
Buemi, meanwhile, appears similarly phlegmatic, admitting to Swiss newspaper Blick
that 'I have learned to live with the pressure for three years' – and that pressure, it would seem, is not likely to dissipate anytime soon. When asked about the driver situation for 2012, Marko would say only: “It is too early to have any serious thoughts.”