Kimi Raikkonen says he is confident that Ferrari has not lost the ability to win races, and believes its current lack of results is just a temporary situation.
Ferrari showed better pace in Spain after introducing a comprehensive upgrade package, but only came away with sixth place for Felipe Massa as the Brazilian ran low on fuel in the closing laps and Raikkonen retired with a hydraulic issue. Although the Finn had only started from 16th thanks to a strategic error in qualifying, he felt Ferrari could take encouragement from the Barcelona weekend.
"What is positive is that the car is stronger than before and we can still improve it a lot," said Raikkonen. "We are getting where we want to be, which is fighting with the guys at the front and that is what we are aiming for.
"We are taking the first step, so if we take something positive out that is a good thing. Apart from that it was a difficult weekend for us but hopefully we'll get some better races. We have not been very lucky with many things lately, but at some point it will turn and we will be back."
He denied that the team had lost its edge, while admitting that it could be trying too hard in some instances.
"We haven't lost anything – it is the same people doing the same things as when we were winning," Raikkonen said. "But we seem to make some mistakes and sometimes you make mistakes more easily when you push harder and try and get back.
"When you are winning, it is always easy, you can always be safe with certain things. For sure we could have done many things better this year, but we are learning from all the things and I am sure we can get back at that level.
"It is just it seems to take an awful long time, but it is not the first time in racing that it happens. We know what we need to do, and like I said at some point we will get it back and be where we want to be."