Manor Racing’s Dave Ryan has admitted it has taken some time to get readjusted to live in Formula 1 and as racing director of the smallest team on the grid.
Ryan spent seven years away from the sport following his acrimonious departure from McLaren back in 2009, and has conceded that he has been forced to re-adapt to the Formula 1 grid, especially as his new team are at the back of the grid when during his McLaren days he was towards the front.
Ryan has also had to reign in expectations within the team, including from drivers Pascal Wehrlein and Rio Haryanto, who like the rest of the team feel they are capable of more.
“It’s taken me a few races to get my head around things and up to speed, and I’m still not up to speed. I’ll be honest about that,” said Ryan to Autosport. “The difficult thing is managing expectations, for everyone.
“The drivers are frustrated, which is understandable because it’s their career isn’t it? So we have to do as well as we can for them.
“The team also is frustrated because we know we’re capable of more, so collectively we just have to keep plugging away and build a strong base so we know what we have got moving on to next year, but there’s a lot to do.”
Ryan insists it is still the ambition of the whole Manor Racing team to continue their improvement and make themselves genuine midfield runners in the not too distant future, and has praised the efforts of the small team to get them where they are this year.
“I believe when this team started on the ’16 car there were just eight designers, which puts things in perspective,” revealed Ryan. “But I think the people behind it have done a fabulous job on this car if you take into consideration the restrictions they were working against.
“If you look at our car and some of the other cars then quite obviously there are some things that could be done differently. Given another year and some more resource, which we’ve now got, we can do that for next year, so that’s the plan.
“We will learn and we will look at everything on the car and decide what we need to improve. It’s pretty obvious we need to improve a lot, so that’s the goal.”