According to Ferrari team principal Maurizio Arrivabene, Kimi Raikkonen is unbeatable when the car is there for him.
With Raikkonen out of contract at the end of the season, rumours have been doing the rounds that Sergio Perez and Daniel Ricciardo are being eyed as possible replacements if the Finn is to leave the Italian Constructor.
However, Arrivabene has claimed that it is still too early to make a decision on the 2007 World Champion’s future, saying that he still has all the attributes a driver needs to be a world class competitor.
Raikkonen is currently sitting fourth on the Drivers’ Championship table, 15 points behind his teammate Sebastian Vettel.
“I have said many times that we have two world champion drivers,” the Italian told Motorsport.com.
“Sebastian wanted to come to Ferrari – it was his aspiration as it is for many other drivers. He is focused on his work and I think he wants to stay here for a long time.
“Kimi is giving his contribution to the constructors’ championship, and in the first part of the 2016 season he has done well. When the car is there for him, I do not think that he is inferior to anybody.
“But it is too early to give definitive answers for next year – we still have two thirds of the season ahead of us.”
Arrivabene also went on to add that there is no favourtism in the Scuderia garage and said that he couldn’t have asked for a better pairing in the sport.
“It’s a compromise. I have a very direct and honest relationship with them, and vice versa,” he continued.
“We face each other very clearly and very bluntly. There is never a need to impose anything, we simply get on with what needs to be done. The characters are different.
“Kimi is more introverted, but in the past year and a half he has begun to talk more, and is very accurate when he provides guidance. Sebastian is open, is meticulous, and is a detail freak.
“Both are great professionals, and you can see that when things are not going well. In certain situations you could become demoralised, but we look over what happens and move on. If you find yourself at dinner, they are nice guys, smart guys, and who have to deal with many issues.
“They read a lot and have eyes that go beyond the paddock.”