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Kimi Raikkonen says Ferrari's engine update is 'not major' but a step in the right direction as it hunts down Mercedes at Silverstone ahead of the British Grand Prix.

The Ferrari driver ended Friday free practice third on the combined timesheet, just 0.332s off of pace-setter Valtteri Bottas, despite a spin midway through the second free practice session on the exit of Becketts.

Raikkonen says the performance gain from a new Ferrari power unit at the British race adds fresh momentum to his 2017 charge after a difficult run of races, while he played down the Becketts off having been one of a number of drivers caught out by the crosswinds at the Northamptonshire circuit.

"It's just a new engine and it's a normal things, but a fresh engine is better than a used engine," Raikkonen said. "It's not major things but it's something that was planned. It wasn't too bad today. A bit more straightforward.

"The wind was a bit tricky in some places but quite normal here. So it's always a bit guessing to start in a new place. It was a decent day, it could have been a bit better but straight forward, but no funny things."

When asked whether Ferrari could challenge the current Mercedes 1-2 lockout in qualifying, Raikkonen conceded the Italian manufacturer would be playing catch-up but is confident of putting pressure on both Bottas and Lewis Hamilton.

"It's hard to say, they [Mercedes] are a bit ahead of us," he said. But tomorrow we try to get better. And we'll see what we can get."

 

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