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F1 NEWS 

Ferrari Formula 1 team backs Kimi Raikkonen amid struggles

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The Ferrari Formula 1 team says it has the "utmost confidence" in Kimi Raikkonen to turn his poor 2014 season around.

Raikkonen lies eight places and 78 points adrift of team-mate Fernando Alonso in the F1 drivers' championship after 10 races.

The Finn has failed to finish ahead of his Spanish team-mate at any race so far this year, and also trails Alonso 8-2 in the intra-team qualifying battle.

Raikkonen qualified behind Alonso again for Sunday's German Grand Prix and finished a pointless 11th after picking up wing damage, while Alonso hailed his own race to fifth as his best of the season so far.

Raikkonen is currently contracted to Ferrari for next season, and team principal Marco Mattiacci said the 2007 world champion is still the right driver for the Scuderia despite his paucity of results in this current campaign.

"Kimi is the driver that we need - we need to make more points, but he's the driver that we need," Mattiacci said.

"I think he knows what he can do better.

"He's a professional driver, he won a world championship with Ferrari; he's motivated, he knows his area of improvement.

"He sees Fernando ahead, he sees that it is tough and it's a tough moment, but we are all together in this.

"He has the utmost confidence and support from Ferrari."

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