Sergio Perez says it was 'a very nice feeling' to get back on track after the winter break as he was handed an unexpected call up to drive with Force India on the first day of the Barcelona pre-season test.

The Mexican was originally set to make his 2015 debut - albeit at the wheel of the 2014 specification VJM07 - on Friday after Mercedes AMG test driver Pascal Wehrlein was given the nod to herald Force India's belated first appearance of the year.

However, when Wehrlein was recalled back to Mercedes to replace the unwell Lewis Hamilton, Perez was given the chance to drive the Force India earlier than planned.

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Immediately up to speed, Perez quickly broke into the 1min 26secs bracket and would proceed to end the day fourth fastest with a time of 1min 26.636secs and 34 laps under his belt. With a full day planned for Friday, Perez is looking forward to continuing his work in the car.

"It's a very nice feeling to be back on track after the break and to start getting back into a racing rhythm. When I got the call to come to the track, I was really excited about having an earlier start than planned. There is so much to do: I have to get to know my new race engineer, Tim, we have new tyres and new parts to try.

"I think it was a positive afternoon and a good head-start on the work we are planning to do tomorrow. We can be happy about our day's work, it was a promising beginning and we can build on it in the remaining three days. 34 laps was a good number for half a day and tomorrow we will be aiming to add many more to the tally."