Sebastian Vettel has likened motivating Aston Martin to continue its hard work without scoring points was like trying to "make your dog jump without a cookie".
The four-time F1 champion ended the Silverstone-based team's points drought at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix with an eighth-place finish alongside team-mate Lance Stroll, who also finished in the top 10 in wet-to-dry conditions.
It has been no secret that the season so far has been punishing for Aston Martin, with aerodynamic issues ensuring the team has struggled at the back of the pack, whilst Vettel himself missed the first two races after contracting Covid-19.
The German, who has labelled the result at Imola as "very important", added: "It is harsh, you work your arse off and when you have a good package, it is easy to score good results and then it is about perfection to deliver the perfect result.
"But the work that goes in at the back of the field, to be honest for many years I did not appreciate as much because I wasn't there.
"It is the same work that goes in from all the people in the team and it is even harder because you don't get any reward after the race.
"Try to make your dog jump without a cookie to please him afterwards, it is hard. Good for them, I am happy for the team and good to get both cars in the points as well."
Vettel unaware of Ricciardo tyre risk
Vettel's race result hinged on a brave move to become one of the first to switch to slicks on a drying track whilst rain was still forecast on the weather radars.
McLaren's Daniel Ricciardo had crashed at the first corner and as a result of his subsequent repairs, ended up trailing at the rear of the field, allowing him to be the first to make the switch to dry tyres.
Asked if he was aware Ricciardo had made the jump first, Vettel replied: "I didn't know. I thought we were one of the first ones. He is smart, although he was further back."
On his enjoyment of the race, he revealed: "It is still eighth position so it is not as enjoyable as winning, but to be honest, I have driven a lot of races where I have finished on the podium and have done a worse race. So I am very happy."
Additional reporting by Ian Parkes