Romain Grosjean says his aim is to qualify inside the top five in Korea after a solid start to his weekend at the Yeongam circuit.
The Lotus man, who qualified on the second row of the grid last time out in Singapore, was sixth quickest on the times having lapped half a second quicker than team-mate Kimi Raikkonen.
Eager to make up for the disappointment of being forced to retire from the Singapore race, Grosjean will now aim to impress this weekend as he seeks to secure his position as team leader for next season.
While he admitted that the gap to the front could be too large to bridge, the Frenchman said he felt the top five was a realistic goal as the weekend goes on.
“My first two runs this morning weren't perfect, so we decided to change a few things during the break but that didn't exactly go to plan either,” he said. “Finding the right balance for a full lap here is quite tricky as the different sectors are quite unique from each other, but eventually we returned to a more conventional setup for a run on the option tyres and the car felt much better.
“This circuit is a bit more front limited which doesn't particularly help us, but hopefully the track evolution will bring it towards us a bit more tomorrow. Half a second to the leaders is a bit of a gap and they look pretty quick, so I think top five is a realistic target in qualifying, but of course we'll do our best to catch them.”