Charles Pic has expressed his delight with the new upgrades on his Caterham CT03 after outqualifying both Marussia drivers for the first time this season.
The French driver qualified 19th, almost 0.9 seconds ahead of Jules Bianchi, and he spoke of his happiness in a team statement.
“I’m pretty happy with where we finished today,” Pic said. “We’d obviously have liked to be a little higher up the grid but with the package we have here in Bahrain I think we got as much as we could today in quali, so we can be reasonably pleased.”
Pic attributed much of the improvement to the new upgrades which Caterham have brought to the Bahrain Grand Prix, and they were tested by the team’s 2012 driver, Heikki Kovalainen, during FP1 on Friday.
“We have a couple of new parts here which have definitely helped us make some progress, and after a good FP3 we were well set for qualifying.”
The former Marussia driver has now set his sights on continuing this good form in the race tomorrow.
“We need to carry that pace into tomorrow’s race and having seen relatively good deg levels on the long runs we could have an interesting fight with a few cars ahead.”
The battle at the back is certainly becoming an enthralling one. Much of the focus has been on Marussia’s Jules Bianchi, who has already been linked to a seat at Ferrari, but Caterham appear to have the edge this weekend. With Kovalainen’s feedback, the team looks set to make a step forward ahead of the beginning of the European season in three weeks’ time.