Global Motorsport Media
Jaime Alguersuari is staking a claim to a 2012 Toro Rosso race seat.
The Spaniard made his debut with the second Red Bull team in mid 2009, but Dr Helmut Marko is known to be considering the future of the current Toro Rosso lineup.
At the Brazil finale next month, whether Alguersuari or his more experienced teammate Sebastien Buemi will sit out Friday practice for French hopeful Jean-Eric Vergne will be decided by the points standings.
Spaniard Alguersuari, 21, was already ahead of Buemi prior to Korea, but he extended the gap to 7 points by finishing a strong seventh on Sunday.
He will therefore also be in boss Franz Tost's good books, given the team's late-season development push to catch up with Sauber for seventh place in the constructors' championship.
I think we've taken a huge leap
"I think we've taken a huge leap," he added. "I am very excited because next year we can have a great car."
And if Marko decides to drop just one Toro Rosso driver at the end of the season, Swiss Buemi appears very much in the hot seat now.
"This is not important, only getting Toro Rosso ahead of Sauber," insisted Alguersuari. "He (Buemi) is also doing a good job."