The 21-year-old replaced Sergio Perez at the Woking-based outfit for this season and put in an error-free drive to second place at the Albert Park Circuit. However, he has failed to return to the podium since and has collected just three points in the last five races.
“I think thinking back to Australia, it was a great result and a good weekend and a good memory, but if I compare where I am now to Australia, I know so much more now,” he explained to media at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve ahead of this weekend’s Canadian Grand Prix.
“What I’ve learned since Australia is massive, about the tyres, about the car, about Formula 1 in general. I really feel that I as a driver have made progress.
“We as a team are moving forwards as well. it’s just very difficult when we are a long way behind. The progress we’re making is small compared to the gap that we have, but as long as we make progress, I think we’ll be alright.”
His technical feedback is thought to not be on par with that of his team-mate Jenson Button, which some have cited as a possible reason for McLaren’s recent lack of pace. However, Magnussen disagrees.
“Our feedback is never the same, it’s always different, which is good, because you get different inputs and different ideas,” the Dane explained. “I don’t feel like I’m holding the team back in the development of the car. I feel that I’m contributing with good feedback, and I’m saying what I feel, and what I feel is right.
“I don’t hold back and feel shy, I open my mouth and as a young kid coming to F1, you need to be brave enough to tell your opinion and open your mouth. So whether it’s right or wrong, I’ll let them pick that out, and I feel that the best way to learn is to be open and to say what it is I think.
“They understand that I have very limited experience. They tell me what they think is right and wrong, and then they listen a lot as well, which is what I’m really proud of in the team. I’m proud of the team that they listen so much to me, and that they use my feedback even though I’m so inexperienced, and it gives me confidence too to open my mouth.”
Image courtesy of Octane Photographic