Raikkonen: We have to believe
"You don’t really know until you get the car on the circuit"
It was here in 2007 that Kimi Raikkonen won the World Championship with Ferrari, but today in his media session he reflected on a somewhat less successful year.
“Every season when you don’t win the championship, you can more or less forget it,” said the straight-talking Finn. “You are here to win races and championships and if you don’t manage it you have failed, whether you are second or twentieth. It’s been a hard year but we have learned things that will help us in future. But it’s not much fun when you have difficulties race after race. That’s how it goes sometimes in Formula 1, but we have to believe in what we do and I’m sure we can get back to where we should be. During this year, we improved a lot on the engine and electronics side and for sure the car has got more downforce now. It’s a much better car than it was at the beginning of the year.”
So would next year’s car fix the problem? “I’ve seen numbers from it and so on, but it’s the same story every year; you don’t really know until you get the car on the circuit,” replied the Scuderia Ferrari driver. “They started very early on the design of next year’s car and the designers listened to us and made some changes to try and improve in areas where we feel this year’s car has been lacking in performance. I believe we can have a much better car and a much better package. How good? We will know in February next year.”
Raikkonen then went on to explain exactly why he does not get on with the F14 Ts tendency to understeer in corners. “Since go-karts, if the front end doesn’t turn in and bite, I have never liked it. My driving style is more to try and carry the speed in the corners, keeping the speed mid corner. That’s the way I’m used to doing it and obviously I change my style a little every year. I believe that is the fastest way for me and if I can’t put the car where I want and brake the way I want because of locking wheels or sliding from the front, then it’s going to become a guessing game and if you miss the line through one corner then you miss it through the next ones. It sounds a small thing, but over a lap it becomes quite a big deficit.”