Force India's Adrian Sutil believes that he should be able to break into the top-eight today and score points in the European Grand Prix, despite failing to make it through to the top-ten shoot-out on Saturday.
Sutil had been right on the pace in practice and even topped the times in the final session prior to qualifying. However he was unable to progress to Q3, missing out by just one tenth of a second.
Despite that disappointment though, he is optimistic about his prospects for today's race. Indeed he is convinced that the improvements made to the VJM02 since Hungary, have definitely helped to improve the competitiveness of the car.
"We've been quick here all the weekend and everything is working very well," Sutil stated. "I'm really happy about the upgrades we've put on the car, the team is doing a great job. We've made a big step forward in the last couple of months and I'm really enjoying every session now.
"This morning was the best way to prepare for qualifying, but we knew it was not going to be possible to replicate this position. Conditions for qualifying were actually pretty tough with quite low grip and high temperatures but the lap times are very close - it seems to be a characteristic of this circuit.
"We were just a few hundredths from Q3 so we just missed out in the end. We are in a good position now though so it's a reasonable goal for us to say we want to score our first points here."
Giancarlo Fisichella however didn't do so well in the sister VJM02 and he went out in Q1. Consequently he will start from 16th, something he was not at all happy about.
"I am very disappointed with this result as I felt I could have easily got through to Q2 today," Fisichella added.
"Unfortunately on the last run I got caught in traffic on my first lap and then lost about six or seven tenths in the last sector on my second lap, otherwise I really feel we could have got through after the weekend we've been having so far. It's going to be a tough race."
Meanwhile Force India's chief race engineer Dominic Harlow concurs with Sutil that points are a real possibility at this event.
"Realistically Adrian was about where we expected to be in qualifying today and we are pleased that it's demonstrated again our continued improvement of pace.
"It's frustrating for Adrian to have just missed out on Q3 by the smallest of margins especially after getting P1 in FP3 on a reasonable fuel load, and equally for Giancarlo at the Q1 cut-off. There's no doubt though that the car has enough performance here to race with the top ten and there's a chance of points tomorrow," he summed-up.