Marussia team boss John Booth says he is keen to see the progress that the team has made with its MR01 when the European leg of the 2012 F1 season kicks off this weekend in Spain.
The team introduced a series of aerodynamic upgrades for the recent three-day test at Mugello and will now introduce a number of new parts as a result for the Catalunya race.
Speaking ahead of the event, Booth said he was looking forward to seeing how much the team has improved the car at a circuit it knows wel, even though he admitted it was important to consider that rival outfits won't have stood still in the short break that followed the Bahrain Grand Prix
“The Circuit de Catalunya
is a bit like an old glove in that it is a track that we know so well and feel very comfortable with,” he said. “If a package works well here, then it is a good barometer of how much of a step forward we have made, more so than Mugello, where we saw a clear step forward but at what is a less representative circuit. Barcelona has a bit of everything in terms of circuit characteristics, so it should showcase just how much of an improvement our improvements are, although we are only too aware that the rest of the field has not been standing still over the past few weeks.
“Our start to the season was certainly expeditious but we've caught up with ourselves a little now, have a far better understanding of the MR01, and we consolidated our learnings at the test last week. We seem to have developed a good rhythm now and we are on a good trajectory. For that reason I am confident that there is a lot more to come from the car and the drivers this season, so we head to Europe feeling excited and confident.”
Currently Marussia sit ahead of rivals Caterham and HRT thanks to Timo Glock's 14th place finish in the season opener in Australia and the German said he was looking forward to getting on track this weekend to see of the team can now close the gap to some of its rivals ahead.
"I am looking forward to the Spanish Grand Prix
and the start of the European season,” he said. “After racing overseas for the opening rounds it is great to be back in Europe. The logistics are much easier for the team and the journey is shorter for everyone, so we can get straight down to business.
“After the tests in Mugello I think we have a good baseline for Barcelona and now we need to see what the new parts we have will bring. I hope they make a difference and we can be a bit closer to the guys in front of us. I am looking forward to the race weekend again."