Arrivabene challenges Raikkonen over contract

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Ferrari team principal Maurizio Arrivabene has told Kimi Raikkonen he will only receive a contract extension if his performances are good enough this year.

Raikkonen's current deal expires at the end of this season, though there is an option for a further year in 2016 if both sides agree to continue. The Finn hinted he would like to remain at Ferrari on Thursday, saying it was up to the team if he stays or not, and Arrivabene says he has told Raikkonen his performances will need to earn him an extension.

"It's early to talk," Arrivabene said. "He was telling me about the contract and I said to him, it depends on your performance. And Kimi, he’s the kind of person that he appreciates when you’re talking with him in a very transparent way and straight to his face.

"Kimi knows, now it’s early to talk about this at the moment. I’m happy about the performance of Kimi but he needs to push and he knows that."

One area Raikkonen himself admits he needs to improve is with his qualifying performances, but asked if he's made any changes ahead of this afternoon's session in Bahrain Raikkonen replied: “No I haven’t.

"Obviously it’s just a mistake. In qualifying you push on the limit and it’s an awful lot easier to go over the limit when you’re on it. You only have one try on a new set of tyres and if you make a mistake the lap is gone usually, so you just try to make the best out of it after that. It’s just a part of the game and hopefully we start getting it more right but it would help us a lot for the race.”

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