Ralf Schumacher is confident that Toyota can match their encouraging Malaysia pace in the Australian Grand Prix.
After putting the nightmare of their Bahrain weekend behind them to score a point in Sepang, Schumacher sees no reason why Toyota cannot continue to make the necessary progress they need in Melbourne.
"Hopefully we can again be at a good level," he said. "The weather in Melbourne has been hotter than anticipated and we will have to look carefully at the tyre choice. We have an important tyre test at Paul Ricard in France before the Australian race and we expect to learn more there.
"It looks like being a very competitive season but my race pace at Sepang was good and I set a fastest lap that was on a par with Jenson Button, who finished on the podium, and with McLaren. Hopefully we can start challenging for podiums again soon."
Schumacher believes that the difference in pace between Toyota's Bahrain and Malaysian weekends was simply down to the team getting a better handle on their tyre situation.
"In Bahrain the car just had no grip but the balance felt okay and that's a pretty unusual set of circumstances," he explained. "We just expected the weather to be hotter in Bahrain and the track temperature is an important element of making sure that the tyres are working in their correct operating window.
"The forecast in Bahrain was 46 degrees track temperature and it never came to that. On the first day in Malaysia we saw a clear difference and it was much easier to get the tyres into the working range, therefore we were closer to the pace."