McLaren driver Juan Pablo Montoya believes the only reason why teammate Kimi Raikkonen looks faster is because the Finn has a better understanding of the British team's car.
Montoya joined McLaren last season but failed to match his teammate's results, winning three races to Raikkonen's seven. The Finn finished second in the championship, behind Fernando Alonso.
Montoya, who missed two races after an injury, finished in fourth place, over fifty points behind Raikkonen.
This season, the Colombian has scored four points in the first two races, but while in Bahrain Raikkonen finished on the podium after starting from the back, Montoya finished in fifth. In Malaysia, Raikkonen retired while his teammate was fourth.
The McLaren driver reckons that Raikkonen's experience with the car is giving him the edge and says that he's not affected by the impression that Raikkonen is faster.
"I don't care at all what you write about Kimi or myself," Montoya said in an interview with Autosprint. "Whatever you write, good or bad, won't change my life. I don't need to read to be able to judge myself and my work. That's what counts.
"I need to work on the performance of a car, and if at the moment it looks like Kimi drives it better, it's only because he understands it better. I'd like to see how things would be with a different car.
"Because, believe me, this McLaren is different from anything I've ever driven in my life."
Montoya believes he can still improve his performances as long as he gets to grips with setting up his McLaren.
"The first car I drove with this team was extremely distant from my driving style," he added. "I worked my butt off to understand how it worked and to try to improve things; but I was still faster than Kimi sometimes. With set-ups he's more at ease, more consistent, thanks to having been in the team longer.
"For me there was incredible understeering. Looking at the telemetry... the amount of understeering, for example, in the Chinese GP... even then I was faster than Kimi. If I still had a Williams I would have been two seconds slower.
"And they still say things... It's stupid. It was all down to the work I did to better understand the car. This year too, in Malaysia... We were testing different stuff between the morning and the afternoon, I had to do long distance testing."
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