Giedo van der Garde believes he can start exploring the potential of the Caterham CT01 when he next gets a chance in the car after a productive debut test for the team at Jerez on Thursday.
The Dutchman has previous Formula 1 test experience with Spyker/Force India, Super Aguri and Renault, but prior to Jerez had not been in a car since last September's Monza GP2 event. He said that meant the Caterham test was largely a reacclimatization experience.
"Because it was the first day for a long time, they had a programme for me to come down and see how everything's going," said van der Garde. "This was all to know the stuff that happens in Formula 1."
He believes the new Caterham can take the team forward, and that he will be able to make a bigger contribution now he has had a day to settle into the test. Van der Garde is set to drive in several Friday practice sessions this year, and hopes to get more pre-season test mileage too.
"The car is running very well and I think there is a lot of potential," he said. "For me to get used to the peak of the new tires and the braking was a big deal, but the next test will be better.
"I'm happy to be back and the team was happy with my performance. They asked me to do a lot of things, and we did everything. I hope to still do one more test before the season starts, we'll see if that's going to happen."