Kimi Raikkonen has warned his rivals that he will start next season in better shape than 2007, and admits that he now has a taste for world titles.

Speaking at Ferrari's traditional end-of-season press conference, the Finn insisted that, despite winning on his debut with the Prancing Horse, things had not been right on his side of the garage until much later in the season as he struggled to get the F2007 honed to his driving style. Raikkonen, like title rival Fernando Alonso, also had to get used to the Bridgestone tyres, having raced on Michelins with McLaren until 2006, but reckoned that next season will see him on top of the car from the start.

"Next year should be easier - not just for me, but also for the team," he claimed, "This year, we had some difficulties to get the car right, as I wanted, so we'll see what we do for the new car. It's very hard to say at this point how good the car will be, but we have great expectations. We'll see what happens next year. But we have a good feeling."

The new world champion also welcomed the technical changes being implemented for 2008, believing that he will have a headstart on some of the newer arrivals to the top flight.

"When I came to Formula One, we didn't have traction control," he pointed out, "There are so many things coming up, so I think it'll be good fun - and more challenging too. Taking the traction control away will give us more opportunities to overtake...."

 

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