Brodie Kostecki believes Erebus Motorsport has a "strong package" to challenge runaway championship leader Shane van Gisbergen.
Kostecki scored his maiden podium in Race 5 at the Penrite Oil Sandown SuperSprint, only beaten by van Gisbergen in treacherous wet-weather conditions.
Overcoming car gremlins which threaten to derail his weekend early on, the Erebus Boost Mobile Racing driver demonstrated confidence in the wet to climb from P7 to P2.
Reflecting on the early success, with the result coming in just his 11th start, the 23-year-old is confident his team can step up into the leading pack, having had a taste of what could have been.
"It was really cool to get second," Kostecki told Supercars.com.
"But I saw [van Gisbergen], he was literally right in front of me for the whole race.
"I've had a little taste but not close enough; I was the first loser.
"Shane's unstoppable at the moment, but we came close on Sunday.
"Obviously we came up a bit short but going into Tasmania I feel like we will have a pretty strong package.
"But, if you’re not first you're last, as Ricky Bobby said."
Kostecki secured his first full-time drive with the Erebus squad for the 2021 season.
He made his main game debut aboard a wildcard entry for the 2019 enduros, and impressed at Sandown where he held a top five spot early in the race.
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When asked if he is the man to beat van Gisbergen in 2021, Kostecki was optimistic.
"I'd hope so, it would mean a lot if we could end the streak he's on right now, but he is in fine form on the track," he said.
"I've worked really hard to get to this point, but I want more.
"I didn't come this far and work this hard to settle for second.
"I can't wait to see what happens, we will give it 100 per cent and see what we could come up with."
Kostecki heads to next month’s trip to Symmons Plains 10th in the standings, with Erebus teammate Will Brown 15th.
The Repco Supercars Championship field will return to the Apple Isle for the Beaurepaires Tasmania SuperSprint across April 10-11. Tickets are on sale now.
The event will be broadcast live on Foxtel and will be streamed on Kayo.