Michael Schumacher believes breaking into the top 10 in both qualifying and the race is a realistic expectation for Mercedes in Korea.
The team endured its worst grid positions of the season last weekend at Suzuka. Schumacher started 23rd due to a 10-place grid penalty, while Nico Rosberg was 13th. The seven-time champion insists Mercedes does not need to fear a repeat performance in Korea, saying that it already looks in good shape to make Q3.
"We come here with a better situation than we had in Suzuka," Schumacher explained. "The track is much more suitable for us, [which is] not a surprise - we've seen it be the case earlier in the year and it is the same here.
"I felt pretty much OK [in practice]. We have the super-soft and soft tires, and [while] we may have concerns about how long the super-soft will last, it was pretty reasonable.
"I'm hoping to be in the top 10 tomorrow in qualifying and then have a solid result on Sunday."
Rosberg, wiped out on the first lap at Suzuka, was similarly enthusiastic about Mercedes' chances. He has broken into Q3 just twice in the past seven races.
"It was a good day for us, we made some good progress," he said. "Michael had some small things to try and seemed to work well, so maybe an upward trend for us, heading in the right direction. Tire-wise we're running quite well; it's looking OK."