Ferrari may not be starting on the first three rows of the German GP grid, but Fernando Alonso believes they are moving in the right direction.
The Italian outfit made a strategic decision to only use the medium tyres in Q3 and it meant Alonso qualified eighth fastest, nearly two seconds off pole sitter Lewis Hamilton's time at the Nurburgring on Saturday, with his team-mate Felipe Massa in seventh.
Although putting all their eggs in one basket can be dangerous, double World Champion Alonso feels they have made improvements.
"We've made a step forward for this race, no doubt," said the Spaniard.
"At Silverstone we were not competitive. We were one and a half seconds off the pace there in practice and qualifying, which has not been the case here.
"So we are back to a more normal level of competitiveness, although we still need to improve, no question about that.
"We have not been the quickest before, especially on Saturdays, and we're not still not the quickest now.
"But we are more confident and optimistic for tomorrow because the car is performing in a more normal way."
Team principal Stefano Domenicali added: "We took a decision thinking only to the race. Anyway we've a competitive car, as you can see from Q2 results."