Brendon Hartley says he became “a bit selfish” in order to get more accustomed to the “massively complicated” nature of Formula 1, as the anniversary of his debut approaches.
Hartley joined Toro Rosso prior to last year’s United States Grand Prix and retained his seat for 2018, though has scored only two points through the course of the year.
Toro Rosso chased Lando Norris as a potential replacement for Hartley earlier this season and the New Zealander’s position with the team remains uncertain.
It has signed Daniil Kvyat for a third stint but has yet to name a team-mate for the Russian.
Hartley stressed he still has chances to prove his worth to Toro Rosso, and expanded on getting accustomed to Formula 1 after several years in sportscars.
“I changed my approach quite a bit, especially after three rounds of the season when there was speculation of losing my job,” said Hartley.
“That actually made me stronger. That was actually a bit of a test for me, how am I going to react to this, be a bit selfish, think a bit more about myself, not care too much about what the others think.
“For me it has worked, even if the results didn’t show.
“Tyre management, working with the team, it’s a new team around me. The style of single-seater racing which I’ve been away from for a while. It’s not just one thing.
“What I’m trying to say is Formula 1 is massively complicated.
“It’s not just driving the car. There’s a lot that goes on off the track as well, understanding how to get the most out of the people around you, Honda, the engineers, getting the car set up as you want.
“Tyres are a big part. It’s a constant learning process. I know in myself I’ve been improving all year, and I’ve got a few races left in the season to hopefully pull off some good results.”