Daniel Ricciardo put in Toro Rosso frame

Daniel Ricciardo at teh Abu Dhabi test

Daniel Ricciardo at the Abu Dhabi test

Toro Rosso’s driver line-up for 2011 is coming under heat after Daniel Ricciardo’s impressive Red Bull Racing junior test at Abu Dhabi last week.

The second Red Bull team already has youngsters Sebastien Buemi and Jaime Alguersuari under contract for the 2011 season, however, Ricciardo’s pace in the RB6 at the Yas Marina Circuit is putting pressure on Toro Rosso.

It appears that Buemi is the man most vunerable to lose his drive, if there is a change.

Autosport.com reported recently that Buemi and Alguersuari both have contracts – but only for the first half of the season.

Ricciardo’s programme for 2011 has not been confirmed. The West Australian finished second in the Formula Renault 3.5 Series this year, as well as being the official reserve driver for Red Bull Racing.

Red Bull’s motorsport adviser Dr Helmut Marko would not rule out the chances of Ricciardo making the step to F1 next year.

“We pushed Bernoldi, Klien, Liuzzi and Speed without a breakthrough,” Marko said.

“Daniel Ricciardo is the next top talent. A new Vettel? I don’t know.”

Toro Rosso team boss Franz Tost admitted that Buemi was the man under pressure.

“At the beginning of the season he scored points and had a really good level of performance. But at the end of the season he struggled a bit,” Tost said.

“You never know what will happen in Formula One. Our main priority is building a successful car. Regarding drivers and continuity, we will see.”

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