Sebastian Vettel has praised the "spirit" at Aston Martin after conceding the team has accepted it is not performing at the levels expected this season.
After four races last year, as Racing Point the team had scored 42 points and trailed third-placed McLaren by just nine. On this occasion, the Silverstone-based team has only five points and sits a lowly seventh in the standings.
Despite the difficulties being experienced by his new team, Vettel is adamant the atmosphere within the factory walls remains positive.
“I think it is not a secret we expected to be stronger this year," said Vettel. "Obviously, for reasons, we are not so. It is what it is.
"But I think we can grow as a team. There are a lot of small things we are looking at which we can improve and I think the whole group is still very excited.
"The spirit is great so I am still very happy where I am despite the performance not being where we all wanted it to be.
“But I think we have accepted that and we try to do the best we can from there.”
Vettel joined Aston Martin over the winter after ending a six-year stint at Ferrari. Just as the team has struggled, Vettel has also found results hard to come by as the four-time F1 champion is yet to score a point, finishing 15th and 13th twice apiece.
Commenting on his tough start to life at Aston Martin, he added: “I really enjoy working with the team and I think we are making progress, I am making progress so I think there is always stuff that you can pick up and learn.
"Obviously, with some things, the team works differently to what I know but I think there is still time to capitalise from the differences and ensure that we are not leaving anything behind
“So when the days come that the car is in a better place and we all are as a team, we will have a stronger result or score more points.”
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