Sebastian Vettel has said the mistakes made on race day in 2016 ultimately prevented Ferrari from showing their true progression.
The Scuderia caused quite the stir at Winter Testing in Barcelona with both Vettel and team-mate Kimi Raikkonen setting the fastest laps with pace left to spare.
The sudden revival after such a poor showing in 2016 has come as a surprise to many, but Vettel believes the Prancing Horse's results last year are not a true reflection of the forward steps that Ferrari have actually made.
"We are better prepared than last year, we did more laps," Vettel said in the Barcelona paddock.
"Overall the team is in a better shape.
"We learned a lot from last year, and I think last year was the most important year for us.
"Even if you look at the results you say it was not such a successful one, what happened in the background was really, really important to make a step forward, and hopefully we've done that.
"Last year we learned a lot of lessons, the whole organisation, the whole team I think has grown. I think it was the most important year.
"Obviously '15 was a great year to start for myself, for the team to restart the mission to win.
"'16 was a step back in terms of results, but I think a massive step forward in terms of organisation."