Bruno Senna believes an improved DRS could be key to helping Williams find the qualifying boost it needs to make the most of its race pace.
The Brazilian enjoyed another points-scoring performance in China, but the team's chances in grands prix are being hampered by its struggles to get the most out of its car in qualifying. Senna thinks, however, that with the midfield pack so tightly grouped together that a small lap time benefit from DRS on Saturdays could be very influential.
"When you look at the qualifying performance it's so close with everybody," Senna told AUTOSPORT. "We are talking about 15 cars in six tenths of a second.
"If you think about it, if you can get three tenths from the DRS effect, which is not impossible, then you are already jumping maybe three or four positions. So we are focusing on that, but especially on improving the performance of the bits and pieces of the car. I think we are going in the right direction."
Senna thinks that, until the DRS is improved, he and teammate Pastor Maldonado may struggle on tracks where the straight-line speed boost is most beneficial.
"We know all the other teams have a bigger effect [from DRS], so on tracks like China with long straights it is hard," he added. "And even Bahrain will be tough for us.
"We are going to try harder, but the important thing is to keep the nose clean in the first lap of the race and then make sure that you have a nice, long race ahead of you."