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Melbourne a 'voyage into the unknown' - Glock

ESPNF1 Staff
March 12, 2012 « Raikkonen expects Lotus to suit Albert Park | No one looks dominant - Whitmarsh »
Timo Glock got his first taste of the new car during a filming day last week © Marussia
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Timo Glock is expecting a "voyage into the unknown" with Marussia at the first race of the season and has admitted he has been frustrated by the team's struggles over the winter.

A failed crash test meant the new Marussia MR01 was not allowed to test alongside the other teams in Barcelona earlier this month and Glock and team-mate Charles Pic had to settle for two promotional filming days instead. The car has yet to run on Pirelli's race tyres, although Glock did sample them at the second test in last year's car.

"I couldn't wait to try the MR01 for the first time last Monday," Glock said. "Even though it wasn't in representative conditions, it has been a long wait to get my hands on a car that I'm hoping will be a good step forward from the past two seasons. It has been a frustrating winter for sure, but you have two choices and the only thing to do was to focus on everything we could be doing off-track to make sure we were as prepared as possible for when we did run the car.

"I've done a lot of work in the simulator and with the team in Banbury and in terms of my personal fitness I have been training harder than ever before. Melbourne will be a bit of a voyage into the unknown but we have nothing to lose and I'm even more excited than usual to see how the car feels in Friday's first free practice. Albert Park is a great track and I love going there for the first race of the season. I would rather be going there with more preparation but we will do the best we can and see where we are."

Team principal John Booth has no doubts Marussia will have a challenging weekend in Australia, but is confident it is now heading in the right direction.

"It has been a tough time for everyone but it is situations like this that really test the mettle of a team. The early years were always going to be tough for us but I have never had any doubts about the ability of our people to ride whatever storm comes our way. It is that faith rewarded that sees us heading out to Melbourne in a rather more orderly fashion than you might expect. The journey is just a breather of course and when we get there, we will no doubt face a challenging time building up to the race. We have not had the track time we'd hoped for with the MR01 and therefore the time it takes to iron out the teething problems that are to be expected with a new car.

"We take some heart from a relatively straightforward roll-out during two days of promotional running last week but we have yet to run on the Pirelli P-Zero performance tyres and really glimpse the first signs of the potential of the package. Nonetheless, we're heading in the right direction again and I'd like to take this opportunity to thank every single member of our team, and our partners, for all their support and efforts. It is over to us now to do the best job possible in these first few races."