I agree - there are some deeper things available if you go find them. I won my open wheel championship in a pretty bad car by combining a very smooth driver with an engineer that gave a bonus to tyre wear on a particular compound.
That combination allowed me to consistently run a softer compound than my competition, but still get the tyres to the same pit window and the extra speed from the grippier rubber covered for the car’s shortcomings.
It also allowed me to do things like pit super early and bring my driver out into a very long stretch of completely clear air. He could then turn consistent quick laps without being held up by anyone and by the time he was catching the pack and would have to rely on the car’s limited power to overtake, they were all ready to come in for their stops, allowing him to cruise by.
Outside of that you can stack your votes in the “GMA” rules commission by abstaining and then use them to ram through an issue that will explicitly help you. You can see the upcoming votes ahead of time, right from week one of the season and with certain team characteristics you can even put a specific issue up for vote yourself.