Sergio Perez believes Force India has made "a great step" in terms of progress at the start of the final pre-season test.

Perez topped the timings on Thursday in Bahrain, while also completing over 100 laps on what was his most productive day of testing so far this year. After such an encouraging day of running, Perez said the progress Force India had managed to make was clear to the team.

"I think we've done a great step today," Perez said. "We really needed a day like this, especially because I've been having so many troubles in the last couple of days. Today has been a fantastic day in terms of work and in terms of learning, I'm very happy with the day. I think the team has done a great job because we moved forward big time.

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"Tomorrow is my last day in the car before Melbourne so hopefully we can have a better day and then we will be in very good shape."

Speaking about the specific areas where he had made progress on the opening day, Perez revealed just how much work he had managed to get through with consistent running.

"I learnt about the car, how it performs, about the tools, how we can manage the torque... We have so many different maps that you can dial in to under braking, brake balance; so many things that you have to learn and before I couldn't do much in the car."

And Perez added that Force India would be adding a number of updates to its car on Friday.

"We still have some set-up directions that we would like to try. Tomorrow basically we're going to have a very different car to the one we had today, so trying to dial in that car will be a real challenge."