Felipe Massa has put his current level of competitiveness down to that fact that he feels "comfortable" with his Ferrari F138.
For the second time this season the Brazilian outqualified his much-lauded team-mate Fernando Alonso, taking second place on the Sepang grid to Alonso's third.
It is Massa's first front row achievement since the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix back in 2010.
"I feel comfortable in the car, that I can do a good lap and get the maximum from it," said the 31-year-old.
"It was clear I was not comfortable last year, the year before, I had so many problems around the car, with myself, bad luck.
"Things were not going in the right direction, but now they are."
Added to that, Massa says he also believes in his own ability as he bids to help Ferrari secure this season's Championship double.
"I know how quick I can be, I've shown that many times in the past, and I know if everything works then we can be competitive.
"I believe in myself, which is really important for the team, for Fernando as well, for everybody.
"We need a strong team, to be in a strong position, fighting for position every race, which is a good direction to take.
"Right now I feel very happy. When I get in the car I'm much happier, which is the best thing for the team."