Jenson Button said his British Grand Prix qualifying performance was much better than he expected, even though he did not get into the top 10.
A late lap from Kimi Raikkonen edged Button down to 11th in Q2 by half a tenth of a second. But having been very unhappy with the McLaren's pace on Friday, Button felt genuine progress had been made.
"I'm higher than we expected to be this morning and yesterday," he said. "It's been very difficult. We changed a few things for qualifying, and now we're a second slower than the quick cars not 1.5s. We gained the half a second that we hoped to.
"We're never happy to be P11 but if we'd been in Q3 I don't think we would've gone out so we would've been 10th. I'm much happier in qualifying than I have been for the rest of the weekend.
"It's not great, but it's a little less bad. I think that's the best way to say it. I actually enjoyed driving the car out there."
Button now hopes that the single-lap improvements also translate into race pace.
"Getting well into the points is something that we have to aim for," he said. "I don't know if we can do it, looking at our pace yesterday, but we have improved the car."
His teammate Sergio Perez was 14th, and felt being called to the weighbridge by the officials cost him.
"I think I struggled quite a lot with the warm-up of my tyres, because I had to stop for the FIA weighbridge and I lost a lot of tire temperature," he said.
The Mexican also conceded that his car-damaging puncture in practice three had been a hindrance to qualifying.
"It was not the best preparation you can have," said Perez. "It's the most important session before qualifying, so we definitely lost something there."