Kimi Raikkonen says his desire to win is as strong as ever, following the news that he has signed on for a second season with Lotus.
The 33-year-old Finn may have failed to win a grand prix so far in his comeback campaign, but he currently lies third in the championshipl, has finished in the points in all but one race and has also completed every racing lap.
Raikkonen last won a grand prix at Spa in 2009 and, having come close to victory on a couple of occasions this season, admits the desire to add a 19th win to his tally still burns strong.
"My hunger for winning is exactly the same as always and I think I've shown that I'm capable of fighting for victories," said Raikkonen. "Obviously there have been none so far this year, but we have come close a few times and for sure we'll keep on trying for as long as it takes to start winning again.
"This season has shown me that I still love racing as much as I ever did," he added. "Obviously, I would have not come back to the sport if I did not feel like this. Driving a Formula 1 car still gives me the same inspiration and I feel the same passion for it.
"My motivation is as strong as it's always been. I'm keen to race on."
Raikkonen said that while others may doubted him prior to his F1 comeback at the start of the season, following two years in the WRC, he never considered he would have any problems re-adapting to the sport.
"I think there were a few people who had doubts about how I would perform after being away for a while," he said. "Personally, I didn't feel I stopped racing at all. I may have been doing something different with rallying, but after coming back to F1 I immediately felt fit enough – and fast enough – to start racing again."
The 2007 World Champion feels that Lotus is primed to take advantage of the competitive base it has found itself in this season and become a regular challenger for wins in 2013.
"We have proven as team that we can build and develop a strong and reliable car," he said. "This year has been a good platform to put down strong foundations.
"We know what we need to do to improve in some important areas, which should help us get even better results next year."
And he added that he recognised that he would need to improve his own qualifying performances, which have on occasions this season cost him the chance to fight at the front.
"I think to be able to perform better in the races I have to find more from myself and from the car in qualifying," he said. This season has shown that you have to be on first two rows to be able to win every time. It's important to improve our grid positions for 2013. That's one of main targets for me."