Formula 1 - Marussia aims for regular Q2 slots

Marussia is targeting reaching Q2 on a regular basis in 2014, according to team principal John Booth.

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Since joining the Formula 1 grid as Virgin at the start of 2010, the team has very occasionally made Q2 but only thanks to adverse conditions or problems for faster cars.

But Booth believes the major rule change built around the new 1.6-litre turbocharged engines makes reaching this level an achievable, if difficult, objective.

"We would love to get into Q2 on a regular basis on performance," said Booth.

"That has to be the target, but it's not easy.

"There are some very bright people out there in F1 and some big budgets, so we know it's a difficult task but that's our target.

"We are the smallest team but we have pushed for performance as much as we can. It's time for us to take a step forward.

"We took a big step forward percentage wise to the front last year and now it's time to start making up places as well."

Tech analysis: The 2014 F1 midfield

Marussia's focus for the upcoming Bahrain test, which starts on Wednesday, will be achieving reliability.

The Ferrari-engined Marussia MR-03 is set to race in the season-opening Australian Grand Prix in a similar specification to the one already seen, although Booth confirmed there are some minor developments in the pipeline.

"We will have a few small changes, but nothing major," said Booth.

"We're only 190 people and it was pretty tough getting to Jerez but there is a windtunnel programme happening at the moment and there will be some modifications before Melbourne.

"Last year was a perfect example of how important it was to be reliable and to hit the ground running.

"But in 2013 we were the most reliable team and car in F1 so we are trying to achieve the same."

DID YOU KNOW...

Marussia (formerly Virgin) has only reached Q2 on four occasions since joining the F1 grid in 2010.

Timo Glock escaped Q1 in Malaysia (pictured) and Belgium in 2010, with both Jules Bianchi and Max Chilton making the cut at Spa last year.

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