Max Chilton - Photo Credit: Alastair Staley/GP2 Series Media Service

Chilton in his Marussia-liveried Carlin car in qualifying - Photo Credit: Alastair Staley/GP2 Series Media Service

Max Chilton is aiming for a good start in the first GP2 Series race of the year, after scoring his best ever qualifying result of third in Malaysia.

The Carlin driver said that without traffic he could have managed a better result, but was still pleased with the outcome.

“It was my best ever qualifying session and my most frustrating at the same time,” he said. “There was so much traffic, I came across about six cars on one of my flying laps and both myself and Giedo [van der Garde] had to back off quite a bit and then I took the last corner a little bit too steady when I was over three tenths up.

“But I'm happy with our pace today, the car feels brilliant and we've hardly had to make any changes.  I'm starting on the clean side of the grid so getting off the line and into turn one cleanly is the big goal tomorrow.” 

Teammate Rio Haryanto qualified in 17th place for his GP2 debut, and hoped to make progress during the race.

“Today's qualifying session was a bit tricky, I had good pace at the start of the run but when I changed the tyres it didn't quite come together,” said the Indonesian. “I'm really enjoying GP2 though and working with the team.  If I can improve around five places in the race tomorrow I will be happy.”

Team boss Trevor Carlin was delighted with his team's performance.

“This is a great start to the year for the team,” he said. “Max was P2 for most of the session and was disappointed to drop to third, which is a reflection of the expectations that he and the team have for this season.  He should be very pleased with his effort though which stands him in good stead for the race. 

“Rio has done a fantastic job and we're very happy with his progress.  He can have a good race from 17th, and make up some positions for race two.”