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Raikkonen - Ferrari only to get stronger in 2018

©Ferrari

Despite its recent setbacks and reliability woes, Ferrari will only get stronger next season says Kimi Raikkonen.

The Scuderia endured a disastrous Asian leg marked by accidents and engine failures which have practically crushed Sebastian Vettel's hopes of fighting Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton down to the wire.

The Italian squad isn't writing off its title hopes just yet, and Raikkonen, who has yet to win a race this year, believes the team's reversal in fortune will be short-lived.

"Of course we would like a one-two in every race," the Finn told La Gazetta dello Sport.

"But success depends on a lot of things and also the opponents.

"This year we clearly went in the right direction, doing a good job over the winter. And I am sure that we will be even stronger next year," he added.

The 2007 world champion saw his lease with the House of Maranello recently extended, and he welcomes the opportunity to work alongside Vettel for another year.

"We have a good relationship and that helps us to tackle the problems and solve them together for the benefit of the team," said Raikkonen.

"We met almost as soon as he came into Formula 1 and became friends. But of course on the circuit we want to beat each other."

Raikkonen, a veteran of 15 seasons and 267 Grands Prix in F1, said he is not planning for the day he will eventually retire.

"Generally I have no plans even for next week," he smiled.

"Perhaps afterwards I will do rallies for fun. Driving and competition are the only reasons I'm still in Formula 1," Raikkonen explained.

"I still have a feeling that I can win races and fight for the championship."

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