The Italian driver held talks with a couple of GP2 teams over winter but eventually decided on the Renault series as the best way to step up to the top division. When asked by italiaracing.net if the move was a step backwards he noted: "It's not a step back and neither a step forward.
"I don't see World Series by Renault as inferior to GP2 - in fact, I think that on certain tracks our single-seater can be faster than GP2's. But what matters is to take part in a serious, high quality, competitive championship. World Series by Renault, with 30 cars taking part, top teams and absolutely fine drivers, has nothing less than GP2.
"And at least we know the winner will be able to test the Renault Formula One car - I haven't heard similar news from GP2."
Toccacelo, who finished second in Formula 3000 last year in front of the Formula One paddock, is covetously eyeing this opportunity after contacts made in the senior category ended with nothing.
"I got close [to Formula One] several times," he noted wistfully, "but nothing ever came to fruition. Last winter I met David Richards a couple of times when he was at BAR -something good was starting to come up, but then everything fell through when he and the team parted ways."
At 27 the Italian acknowledged that time is running out for his debut in the top flight, but has taken heart that all four debutants in Formula One this year are of a similar vintage and ability, moving against the previous criterion of youth and inexperience.
"Yes, and I hope for a test at least. But my only objective this year is to win the series - I'm convinced I can fight for the overall victory. The team members feel motivated and I do even more: I want to win."
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