Sauber’s Sergio Perez was upbeat after his second day in the C31 hot seat, but was quick to suggest that developing the Swiss squad’s new chassis would be key to success in 2012.

“I think we are optimistic of course,” said the Mexican. “It’s a good starting point for us, but we must develop our car from now to Melbourne – we have to find performance because most of the other teams will too.”

“It is really important to push the maximum to try to get the performance before Melbourne which will make the difference now. I believe that we are now in a good position, but everything could change when we get to Melbourne.”

The young driver, gearing up for only his second year in the sport, stated that he was looking forward to using the experience he gained in 2011.

“Physically I am a lot fitter than last year as a starting point, so I have done a very good training during the winter,” he said. “Mentally with my engineers the communication is a lot better too, so I am very well prepared for this season and I am looking forward.”

“It’s not just knowing the circuits, but being used to the complete race weekends. I already have the information from last year now; what happened in that race weekend, how conditions are change, what we have to change – so I can guide the team a lot more than I could last year. In that side it’s how experience counts.”