It was a steep learning curve for Jolyon Palmer in his first season in Formula 1 in 2016. But having survived the experience and retained his Renault seat for a second year, Palmer is optimistic there are better things to come.
"I’m really confident that it will be a much better season," said the 26-year-old. "I haven’t got a lot of doubt about it."
"I feel like it’s completely different sat here now," he told Reuters.
" started quite difficult and I had to regroup," he explained. "I honestly think you learn more in the difficult times. And really, last year there were times where I had to pull myself together."
Palmer - who won the GP2 Series title in 2014 - believes that having gone through the tough experience last year will prove beneficial.
"Having come through that, now I’m sat here with that experience which a lot of drivers don’t have," he said.
"I’ve come through that and now hopefully we are going to have a much stronger year. I know I can dig deep and when the pressure’s on, shine through."
Palmer will have a new team mate this year with Nico Hulkenberg joining Renault. He's hopeful that Hulkenberg's experience at Force India and Williams will help propel the team forward.
"Last year was Renault’s first year back, no-one knew really what to expect, the pressure was big on both drivers.
"This year everything just feels a bit more comfortable," he added. "I feel like hopefully we’re set up for the future as a team now."