Heikki Kovalainen believes he could have made it into Q2 in this afternoon's qualifying session for the Monaco Grand Prix had it not been for traffic.
Kovalainen's Caterham will start tomorrow's race from 18th. He was only 0.047s away from making it out of Q1 after Sauber driver Sergio Perez crashed early on.
The Finn blamed a Marussia for not doing better than his 1m16.538s, but was pleased with his car.
"I've had a good balance all weekend and I went into this session knowing I could push," he said.
"I'd said to my engineer before quali that I thought we could get into Q2 and we were very close - if it hadn't been for one of the Marussia cars slowing me up in the final sector we'd have been there, but it's not a huge issue. That's what happens in Monaco."
Kovalainen still believes he can take the fight to the midfield in the race.
"Around here I think tomorrow we have the car to be able to fight the cars ahead throughout the race," he added.
"So far this season we've been able to stay with them for pretty much most of the first two stints, but because it's a shorter lap here we'd like to be able to fight for the whole race. Whether it's dry, wet or in between, it doesn't really matter to me - whatever happens I'm looking forward to it."