Pascal Wehrlein and the Manor Racing team were delighted after the German racer secured sixteenth on the grid for the Bahrain Grand Prix on Saturday.
Mercedes protégé Wehrlein performed admirably to beat both of the Sauber and Renault drivers, the Force India of Sergio Perez and Manor team-mate Rio Haryanto, and was only just outside making it through into Q2.
Wehrlein still has doubts about the long runs with the MRT05 due to high degradation on the tyres that was first seen during the Australian Grand Prix, but is hoping to have a competitive race on Sunday.
“I’m so happy! Such a difference from Melbourne!” exclaimed Wehrlein. “It was a shame to miss out on Q2 but I’m so pleased to be as close as we are and it’s a really good position to build from.
“I need to thank the team for their hard work in giving me a car I felt comfortable in. We’re in a good place for tomorrow, although we’re still experiencing some degradation issues on the long runs.
“It’s a long race, so we need to manage that. It would be great to get the same kind of start as the last race and I hope we can stay competitive with the cars around us.”