Toro Rosso team boss Franz Tost has predicted that 2011 could be a big season for Jaime Alguersuari, who Tost feels has made major progress during 2010.
The 20-year-old Spaniard finished the season by beating Felipe Massa to ninth place in Abu Dhabi. That only raised his points tally to eight, three less than teammate Sebastien Buemi, but Tost said that looking beyond the results, Alguersuari had impressed him a great deal this year.
"[It was] not only a strong end of the season, Jaime generally had a good season," Tost told AUTOSPORT. "Remember back in Australia when he fought against Michael Schumacher for 30 laps. In Malaysia he did a fantastic race. There have been a lot of highlights."
Former British Formula 3 champion Alguersuari was famously promoted from Formula Renault 3.5 to the Toro Rosso F1 race seat midway through 2009 without any testing after the team had dismissed Sebastien Bourdais. Tost said that this year Alguersuari had a chance to build experience and settle into F1 properly, and that with a full season under his belt, he was now poised for an impressive 2011 – provided Toro Rosso gave him a competitive car.
"I think that he learned this season how to set up the car, how to drive the car, and I'm looking forward to the next season because I think he has matured enough to continue improving himself," said Tost. "But we must also give him the right tools. He still needs a good car, and then I'm convinced he can do an even better job."