Red Bull is heading into 2016 as a better team operationally than it was in 2015, claims its boss Christian Horner.
After a difficult 2015, dominated by engine struggles and the prospect of it potentially quitting F1, the team is now pushing on with its bid to get back to the front of the grid.
And Horner believes that the adversity the team has faced in recent times has helped it become stronger.
"To be honest with you, it has been a tough year – but adversity sometimes brings a group closer together," explained Horner.
"I feel the team is tighter and closer than it has ever been, so actually from a team perspective I don't think it has been a bad year.
"We have been very strong on strategy. Our pitstops have been the best in the pitlane.
"We have out-developed others chassis wise, and we grabbed the three opportunities that might be available to us in Monaco, Hungary and Singapore. On two out of the three we got on second step of podium.
"As a team beneath it, when you drill down and look at how we have performed, we have done a very strong job.
"Certain things beyond our responsibility we cannot control, but you can only worry about the things that you can control."
Horner had to steer his team through difficult political times as it struggled to secure an engine deal for 2016.
And he admitted there were moments when it seemed that team owner Dietrich Mateschitz has lost all interest in keeping his F1 teams going.
"Dietrich became fairly disillusioned with F1, and understandably so," he said. "With both the direction the sport was heading in, and the deals that he believed were in place that were reneged on.
"Inevitably he was pretty upset and peeved off with F1. But when you look at what he has invested in the sport, in two grand prix teams, a circuit, all the young driver programmes - foremost and utmost he is a fan of the sport.
"I think at one point he felt that he was being forced out – and if people didn't want Red Bull to be in F1, why should he be there and commit the funding that the group does?
"He sees the commitment we have to the people and he is a fighter at the end of the day. He is a competitive guy and wants to see the team get back to the front of the grid.
"But for sure, during the summer, his motivation regarding F1, with the sequence of events that happened, he became fairly peeved off."