Despite the team failing to qualify for the opening round of the new F1 season in Australia, Narain Karthikeyan is confident that Hispania Racing can still 'surprise a few people' during the year ahead.
The team failed to get either car into the Albert Park race after being unable to set a time with 107 per cent of the leading Q1 time posted by Sebastian Vettel, with the two new cars having only been completed over the course of the race weekend.
However, with new parts set to be fitted to the car at Sepang, Karthikeyan said he was confident that the team would not only be able to qualify, but would be able to take the first steps towards surprising a few people up and down the paddock.
"The majority of the work is done, but the fine details just go on and on and on,” he told Reuters
. “You needed a complete car or it doesn't make any sense to go out. We know it is a really bad situation but there's no point in complaining about it.
"Basically, they don't want jokers to come in. We respect the 107 percent rule. We are a serious team. When it all gets kicking off, I think we are going to surprise a few people.
"If we get the new front wing, not if, we are going to get it, we are reasonably confident that we will qualify and if all these things happen then we don't have any excuse not to qualify for Malaysia."