Kimi Raikkonen has rated Ferrari’s 2018 Formula 1 world championship challenger as “overall a strong package” as he rounded out pre-season testing on top.

The Finnish driver shook off an illness earlier in the week to complete a full testing programme for Ferrari on the final day at Circuit de Catalunya where he notched up 157 untroubled laps with a timesheet-topper of 1m 17.221s to go within one-tenth of a second of teammate Sebastian Vettel’s new track record.

Raikkonen says despite losing testing time due to snow and rain in the first week followed by his illness at the start of the second test, where Vettel was required to replace the Finn for Wednesday morning’s session, he’s content with the early development progress made with the SF71H.

“I think overall it’s a strong package,” Raikkonen said. “Obviously there’s always things to improve but that’s normal with any car even if you win races there’s always things to improve.

“It’s very reliable and we will see from circuit to circuit, it changes here, new surface, it’s a bit hard to know to compare.”

“It wasn’t too bad, I lost a bit of time last week and this week with the issues, but we cannot change the weather and sometimes you get ill so I think we had a positive last day.

“I didn’t have a very good test due to the weather last week and being a bit ill. I think we had a pretty decent last days, the feeling was okay. Is that good enough? We will see in a few weeks. So far, the car is reliable and the feeling is fine.”

Raikkonen also completed a race simulation on the final day of testing but his times were a fraction below Vettel’s race pace from the day before while both Ferrari drivers appeared up to a second off of pace-setters Mercedes.


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