Raikkonen pushes Ferrari off the top of test timesheets

Kvyat fastest, Ricciardo 3rd in F1 testing

Ferrari are 'a bit ahead' of F1 champions Mercedes, says Valtteri Bottas

"So it is pretty much the same as in recent years where we are out there to work cohesively and extract absolutely everything from ourselves as team and the auto".

Leclerc had an opportunity to drive last year's Ferrari in the post-season Abu Dhabi test but he doesn't feel that running gave him enough data and feel to compare that machine to the 2019 challenger. "I think we feel, at this point, that they're going to be a bit ahead, but obviously it's impossible to make a detailed calculation".

"I'm here for round seven with this team and it's insane to think I've had six years with the team already", he said.

"With the new rules, it's going to be a bit of a development race, we don't think anyone is going with this type of auto in this test to the first race, including us".

Ferrari won the first two races of last year with a auto that seemed quicker than the Mercedes but the champion came back strongly and Hamilton ended the year with 11 wins to Vettel's tally of five.

The sport's oldest and most successful team have also covered an impressive amount of mileage in their new SF90 auto.

Valtteri Bottas says he is approaching the 2019 Formula 1 campaign with the feeling that he "hasn't achieved anything" in the championship, as he bids to improve on a disappointing 2018.

"Ferrari do seem very strong", he said. They are probably not pushing and we are not either.

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"We don't how much the others are sandbagging", he added, referring to the pretence of being weaker than is actually the case.

"If he wants to be on an equal footing with Lewis, he must try to be more of the villain", Nico Rosberg, who beat Hamilton to the title in 2016, told Kolner Express newspaper.

"By the end of the season I don't want to think I wished I tried harder or would have done something differently so I want to take all the opportunities".

Mercedes have said they intend to focus more on speed and performance at next week's second test after mainly concentrating on reliability until now.

Finally, 29-year-old Bottas admitted that Ferrari is now ahead of Mercedes in the winter testing pecking order.

On the track Wednesday, Kvyat led the time sheets after 134 laps as Williams got their new vehicle out of the garage after missing the first two days.

McLaren had a promising first week, being able to run more laps than in both test sessions combined past year.

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