Mark Webber says he was 'expecting a bit more' in qualifying but starting P7 after his penalty is 'not too bad'.
The Red Bull racer qualified in fifth place for Sunday's 57-lap Bahrain Grand Prix after posting a 1:33.078 to finish 0.748s behind pole-sitter Nico Rosberg.
"I was expecting a bit more from it to be honest," he said. "It felt good in P2 and P3, so the build-up has been pretty good. Overall I would have liked to extract a bit more out of the car. It's easy to leave a little bit of lap time round here by pushing just a step too hard.
"That's the way it is for all of us, and there's a lot of treacherous corners where like I say you can drop two or three tenths here and there. Overall I think it would have been very difficult for me to be on the front row, I certainly left a little bit out there."
But despite putting his car up into fifth place, a penalty from his Chinese GP incident with Jean-Eric Vergne means Webber will start the grand prix seventh on the grid.
The Aussie, though, may have a trump card in his hands having opted to use the mediums in Q2, leaving him with an extra set of hard tyres for Sunday's grand prix.
"We've got a different strategy as well, we've got a set of primes on most people for the race.
"Seventh with the penalty is not too bad. It would have been nice to be a row further up at least with the penalty, but anyway it's a long grand prix tomorrow.
"We know that we've got a bit more of an eye on the race in terms of how we've allocated the tyres compared to quality. It's nice to have as many sets as you can. We've got a few sets, so we'll see how it pans out."