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Page last updated at 14:26 GMT, Sunday, 19 April 2009 15:26 UK

Ferrari predict end to poor form

Felipe Massa's car after the Chinese Grand Prix
Massa's car is hauled on to a lorry after a mid-race failure

Ferrari hope they will be able to get their season back on track when the championship moves to Europe in May.

The team have scored no points in the first three races, making this their worst start to a season since 1981.

Kimi Raikkonen, the team's former world champion, said: "We don't have the speed to be where we want to be.

"But for sure when we get to Barcelona (for the Spanish Grand Prix on 10 May) and get some new parts we should improve quite a bit."

Ferrari's car has been off the pace since the start of the season - and they lie last in the constructors' championship, which they won last year.

Raikkonen qualified eighth in the dry in China before dropping back to finish 10th in the wet race, while team-mate Felipe Massa failed to finish following an electronics failure.

But the Finn said he believed the team would find a solution to their problems.

"If we had had a dry race today we would have scored some points," he said.

"We don't have enough grip in the dry but in the wet it seems to be even more difficult. We'll do the best that we can and I'm sure we are going to be back in a position to challenge for wins, so we just need to go through this hard time.

It is not easy but we need to stay cool because there are too many things that can change very quickly

Stefano Domenicali
Ferrari team boss

"But it will take a little while. It will not happen overnight. We know that once we get to Barcelona we should take a step with the car.

"Hopefully it will improve the situation and it has nothing to do with people not trying to do their best.

"But it's not an easy sport to catch up and sometimes when you don't have what you want it just seems to be very difficult and everything seems to be against you.

"It's hard to get out of it, but like I said it takes a while and we need to get through that period and I'm sure that we are gong to be in a position to challenge. I don't know when, but hopefully sooner than later."

Ferrari are hoping to introduce for the Spanish race their own version of the controversial 'double-decker' diffuser that has dominated the sport since the start of the season.

Ferrari were one of four teams to protest against a design of the floor at the rear of the cars run by the Brawn, Toyota and Williams teams, claiming it contravened the new regulations that were introduced for this season.

But the device was declared legal by F1's Court of Appeal last Wednesday and now the other seven teams are facing a race against time to develop one for their cars.

"We probably don't have the same downforce as the others," Raikkonen said.

"When we get the new floor for sure we are going to get lots of downforce and it will make the car fast. In the dry the handling of the car is not too bad, but we are missing downforce through the corners. For sure it will make a massive difference."

Team boss Stefano Domenicali said after the Chinese Grand Prix that the diffuser was not the only reason Ferrari were struggling.

F1 Mole

"That device will give you a benefit," he said. "But it would be wrong to believe that it is the only key. We have seen, for example, the Red Bull car [which does not have one of the controversial diffusers] has done a really great job.

"They had more time, they switched their project much earlier than us and that is the reality and we need to consider it. The other thing that we have to understand well is that today in certain conditions, look at the first part of the race, our car was not too bad at all. So we need to understand a lot of things.

"I think we have to wait. We need to stay cool.

"It is not easy, I know, but we need to stay cool because there are too many things that can change very quickly. The priority number one is to move from zero points."

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see also
Vettel seals first Red Bull win
19 Apr 09 |  Formula 1
Buoyant Vettel eyes more F1 glory
19 Apr 09 |  Formula 1
Chinese Grand Prix as it happened
19 Apr 09 |  Formula 1
The row that has split F1
17 Apr 09 |  Formula 1
Ferrari problems frustrate Massa
05 Apr 09 |  Formula 1
02 Nov 09 |  Drivers & Teams

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