Felipe Massa is convinced that his change of chassis for this weekend's Malaysian Grand Prix has had a positive effect after the first day of free practice.
Ferrari gave the Brazilian a new chassis for this weekend after Massa complained of his car feeling very strange during the Australian GP weekend. And after taking to the track at Sepang, he said he felt much happier with the F2012.
"I started in the morning with a completely different car and it felt good," Massa told reporters in the Sepang paddock. "The car is more normal, so we can be more competitive here compared to [Fernando] Alonso."
He added that Ferrari got a lot of answers about what doesn't work with its car in the second session, which should enable it to make progress ahead of qualifying on Saturday.
"In the afternoon, we tried some different pieces, including pieces we tried in Australia," said Massa. "And everything went in a worse direction.
"So that was positive to understand. The car was completely different to the morning and that can be very positive to find out why things were difficult in Australia.
"Tomorrow, the car can be a big step and much more competitive than what you have seen in terms of lap time [in free practice]."
Massa said that his target overnight would be to improve the handling at the rear of the car.
"We are suffering with instability at the rear, especially in the slow corners," he said. "There are so many things we didn't understand and now we are starting to understand everything.
"We don't have a very competitive car but I hope that we can fight for as many points as possible. I want to get in the car with everything right, the best we have. And that will be tomorrow."