Yuki Tsunoda admits that his debut season in F1 hasn't necessarily been what he thought it would be.
The AlphaTauri driver made a strong start at the season-opening race in Bahrain, where he finished P9 to score his first points in Formula 1. However, things took a turn for the worse after this with a succession of crashes and non-points finishes, though the Japanese native has since managed to improve his consistency.
Tsunoda acknowledges that there have been plenty of ups and downs so far in 2021, though he hopes to build his momentum into the second half of the season.
"The first half of the season overall was really interesting and enjoyable, many things about it were unexpected for me," the 21-year-old said in AlphaTauri's official team preview.
"It did not really match with what I had thought it might be like before the season started. There were lots of ups and downs and at times my performance was very inconsistent.
"But overall, I am quite happy because I managed to score points, helping Scuderia AlphaTauri to be the only team to score points in every race so far this year. We need to keep that going now as we start the second half of the year!"
After enjoying a break during the summer hiatus, Tsunoda is now looking forward to racing a Formula 1 car at Spa for the first time at this weekend's Belgian Grand Prix.
"After Hungary, I headed straight for the simulator in Milton Keynes to do the correlation for Hungaroring and also look at the next three tracks," the rookie driver explained.
"Then I went to Italy and spent time sorting out my new home, which is very near to the factory in Faenza. I was definitely ready for a break and I enjoyed it.
"It's great that we start racing again at Spa, because I have very good memories from this track. Last year in Formula 2, I won the Feature Race starting from pole position and the year before that in Formula 3, it was here that I got my first podium in the category.
"I like the track, so I am looking forward to it and I think it will be one of the circuits that will feel extra special in a Formula 1 car for the first time, it will be an especially interesting experience to see how an F1 car goes through Eau Rouge."