Raikkonen: I know I’ve not lost speed

Kimi Raikkonen hopes to improve in the second half of the season

Kimi Raikkonen hopes to improve in the second half of the season

Kimi Raikkonen acknowledges that the first half of 2014 has not been good for him or Ferrari, but is adamant that he can still win races, that he has not lost any of his legendary speed and is hoping the second part of the season will be better.

Speaking ahead of the summer break, Raikkonen said, “It has been a hard first part of the year. I know I’ve not lost speed from last year, so it’s been disappointing to fight against the issues and problems we’ve had.”

“I hope the second part of the season will be much better than the first, but one slightly better day doesn’t change an awful lot. It doesn’t take away the mistakes, the things we have to improve, to make us work much better as a team,”

“There are a lot of things that need to be done to make sure we are where we should be,” admitted the Finn who won Ferrari’s last world title back in 2007.

“I believe in people and the team, that we can put ourselves where we should be, and there are some signs. ‘They’ve been putting people in the right areas, and I’m sure in the future it will pay off big time.”

Kimi Raikkonen has been outclassed by Ferrari teammate Fernando Alonso so far this season

Kimi Raikkonen has been outclassed by Ferrari teammate Fernando Alonso so far this season

“We know where we are, what we have to do, but there’s a long way to go to be where we want to be, as a team, as Ferrari. We have to make big steps for next year, to keep improving things, and I know we have good plans.”

“We just have to go step by step to improve the issues we have and hopefully we can put things in the right order for me to be happy all the time with the car. That will then allow the team and myself to progress to where I feel we should be and to try to win races,” concluded Raikkonen.

It has been a tough season for Raikkonen, who returned to Maranello at the start of this season after departing at the end of 2009, with Fernando Alonso beating in every race to date – the Finn has scored 27 points, while the Spaniard has amassed 115.

Despite the statistics and below par performances Ferrari, under new boss Marco Mattiacci, are committed to Raikkonen who has a contract until the end of 2015, and believe he will regain the form that made him world champion.

“Kimi is a great champion,” Mattiacci said recently. “It makes no sense to talk about a problem of the individual, it is a problem of the team as a whole. He will return to being a great.” (GP247)