McLaren's Fernando Alonso accepts the team is just missing a "couple of tenths" which would help propel the team towards the front end of the midfield pack.
Alonso qualified in 14th position for the Russian Grand Prix, though he was just 0.201s adrift of Red Bull's Daniil Kvyat, who finished 10th in Q2 and thus progressed through to the final segment of qualifying.
Alonso is confident that McLaren can fight its way past midfield rivals and score points at Sochi.
"The lap times at the end of Q2 were very tight – the difference between 14th position and a place in Q3 was just two tenths," he said.
"And, sadly, we’re at the back of that group.
"But that’s the way it is – I still feel that we’re missing the couple of tenths that would massively help us to overtake some of the other cars in this very competitive midfield group.
"While we weren’t in luck today, I definitely think we’ve shown ourselves to more competitive this weekend, and I hope we can recover tomorrow and fight for some points."