Sergio Pérez, a newcomer to the Red Bull team, says he still has to adapt to the new car, which he admitted doesn’t feel “naturally.”

“We are certainly making big steps all the time, said Pérez. “But we’ve got some work to do over a lap. I don’t quite feel the car within me. I’m still having to think a lot, what’s going on out there. It doesn’t seem to be coming naturally over a lap.

“The long run, I seem to be more comfortable – I think the pace is ther eover the long run so that’s the positive bit. But we’ve got some work to do on the performance side and also with that soft tire – we’re going to be improving a bit more.”

Pérez, however, mentioned he’s happy with the pace the car was showing, and said that he’ll be ready to get used to the car in time to fight in Bahrain’s qualifying and Grand Prix.

“I’m pleased,” said Pérez. “I think the car is performing well. We have good pace and tomorrow is going to be pretty close out there in qualifying, so we have to make sure we get it right and have a good start to the season.

Asked if he expects to be in the fight with Mercedes, Pérez replied “Yes, I think so.”

“I think if we’re able to get it right we should be in the mix tomorrow.”

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