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Kimi Räikkönen believes Lotus has the ability to fight for world titles in the near future, with the Finn eager to build upon his impressive Formula 1 return. Although under a new guise, the Enstone-based team previously claimed the 1995 crown with Michael Schumacher, before Fernando Alonso led the outfit to glory in 2005 and 2006.
Having claimed one victory and a further six podium finishes last season, Räikkönen is confident that the squad has all the ingredients to repeat this past success.
"It’s clear from working with them that they are racers, and you can see in their history that they’ve won championships," said Räikkönen. "Nothing I saw last year made me think that another championship was impossible in the future.
"Of course, there is some pretty tough competition and everyone wants to win. The team have beaten everyone before and there’s nothing to say they can’t do it again."
Räikkönen is also hoping to benefit from the the consistency of remaining at Lotus, explaining that he enjoyed a positive working relationship with the team last season.
"It helps," he said. "It’s not a massive thing which will suddenly mean you start winning all the races, but it’s nice to be at the same team as you understand how they work, and they understand how you work. We quickly developed a pretty good way of working together last year and there’s no reason to think that won’t continue."
Räikkönen claimed his only Formula 1 world title to date back in 2007, when he dramatically beat Lewis Hamilton by one point after the Interlagos season finale.
Full interview with Kimi Räikkönen
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