SAO PAULO (Reuters) - Ferrari had all the tools to be successful this season but mistakes and mechanical issue thwarted the team’s title ambitions, according to Kimi Raikkonen.
Ten years on from his 2007 world championship triumph at Interlagos with Ferrari, the Finn told reporters at the Brazilian Grand Prix on Thursday that the Italian team needed to do better next year.
“As a team, we’ve come a long way from year to year and also from last year, made a good step, obviously not enough for what we want,” Raikkonen said.
”I think we had all the tools this year, we just need to tidy up things and not make mistakes nor have issues on any side, not from our side as drivers or from the team side.
“These are just small things which in the end played a big part this year...but I think we have all the people, we have the tools and we have a great car.”
Mercedes have won the constructors’ title for the fourth year in a row while Lewis Hamilton has wrapped up his fourth drivers’ crown with two races to spare after winning nine of 18 races.
Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel is second overall and has won four times, including the season-opener in Australia.
Raikkonen made a slower start and has not won a grand prix since he was at Lotus in 2013. He did take pole position in Monaco, his first in nine years.
The Finn remains Ferrari’s most recent world champion, with Vettel taking his four with Red Bull between 2010 and 2013, and has a contract for 2018.
Ferrari failed to win a race in 2016 but have had the fastest car at some weekends this season with Vettel leading the championship until the Italian Grand Prix in September.
After Monza the team’s challenge fizzled out with Raikkonen and Vettel colliding in Singapore while engine trouble and a broken spark plug did more damage to the German’s chances in Malaysia and Japan.
“Obviously, the aim is to do better, to fight for wins and championships - that’s, as a team, what we want to do and as a driver I want to do that,” said Raikkonen.
“This year, for sure, in many ways could have been better but I guess it can always be worse also.”
Reporting by Alan Baldwin in London, editing by Ed Osmond