Turkish GP - Kimi meets media
Ferrari President Luca di Montezemolo has never been the sort of person to back away from a challenge and he has thrown down the gauntlet to the team with his comment that Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro has the ability to win the six races remaining in this championship. And it was this declaration that met Kimi Raikkonen when he met the media this afternoon in the Istanbul Park paddock. "All we can try to do is our best at every remaining race and try and score more points than the opposition," he began. "We have to make sure we finish all the races and then we will wait until the very end and see what the scores are. That is our aim for the rest of the season. I have not given up hope on the championship. One bad race for either team can change everything. But we must just try and win races."
But are six wins possible? "I think it is possible for Ferrari to win all six of the remaining races as the circuits we now face should all be good for us," continued Raikkonen. "The most difficult race we faced in this second half of the season was the last one in Hungary and I was quite happy with the car in Budapest. I expect to have a much stronger package on the types of circuit we have coming up now. Hopefully all the remaining circuits will suit us well and I am sure we will definitely be more competitive with our direct rivals than in recent past races. The one new venue is Japan, so we will have to see what that track is like." It was suggested to the Ferrari driver that, with some characteristics similar to the two North American circuits where the team did not perform so well, the Monza track might also be difficult for the F2007. "In Monza the only problem might be the kerbs as riding the kerbs has not been our strongest point this year, but looking at the past, Ferrari has always been very strong at its home race and in recent races we have really improved the way our car handles the bumps," reckoned Kimi. "I think we should be okay there."
As for this weekend, at least the Ferrari driver has seen the circuit from the podium. "I won the first race here in Istanbul, but last year was a bit more difficult as I had a little accident after the start and then I hit the barrier. But I like the circuit and it is good fun to drive, so I'm looking forward to this weekend."
Inevitably, Raikkonen was asked to comment about the "big" story, the alleged dispute between the two McLaren drivers. "The main thing is that I am happy with the way our team is working and there is a good relationship between me and Felipe," he said. "We have enjoyed a good and fair fight between us this year. I am not interested in what happens between the two McLaren drivers. If their apparent disagreement helps us, then it helps, but I am not interested in their situation. If you are always very close to your team-mate in performance terms, it can become quite tense, but it depends on the drivers and how they get on. You can make it difficult or you can make it easy." But Kimi could not resist a small dig at the fact that the two McLaren drivers were kept away from the circuit today: "I guess they are getting an extra day's holiday!" joked the Finn.