Valtteri Bottas says that knowing Mercedes is aware of his strong performances this season is some consolation for the bad luck he has suffered through the first half of 2018.
The Finnish driver missed out on wins in China and Azerbaijan thanks to a safety car and late puncture respectively, then retired because of a mechanical failure after starting from pole in Austria.
Bottas entered the current season needing to impress Mercedes to earn a new contract after being handed a one-year extension during his debut season with the team in 2017.
Speaking in the build-up to the British GP, which extended his winless run this year to 10 races: "It puts me in a decent place this year that even though I've not scored the points I would have wanted I have always performed at the level the team requires me to do," he said.
"I'm more or less on the level I want personally.
"That's a good thing even though only the team sees in great detail how I perform every week.
"Having a few wins never does anything bad for you for the future but at least the team knows exactly how I'm performing and the direction I'm going with my improvement."
The average qualifying gap between Bottas and Hamilton this season is 0.059s in favour of the Briton.
Bottas believes he has eliminated the bigger gaps Hamilton established at times last season, particularly at tracks where Mercedes was its strongest.
"I've felt I have been able to improve my weaknesses, and strengths," said Bottas.
"Overall performance has just been closer, there have been less bigger gaps between me and Lewis.
"No matter if the car's been good to drive or very difficult to drive, I feel I've been able to extract what there is and it's been quite close."