Ferrari reveal cause of Raikkonen engine strife 27 Aug 2008
Ferrari believe that the engine failure, which ended Kimi Raikkonens European Grand Prix on Lap 46, was caused by a broken con rod. A similar issue is understood to have resulted in the retirement of team mate Felipe Massa from the previous round in Hungary.
Initial analysis of the engine fitted to Kimi Raikkonen's car confirmed the breakage of a con rod, said the Italian team in a statement. Currently underway are further checks to try and understand what provoked the failure, even if it is easy to surmise that it could be a similar problem to the one that sidelined Felipe, three laps from the end of the Hungarian Grand Prix.
Ferrari also admitted that they had concerns about the Finns V8 before the Valencia race, but risked using it to avoid Raikkonen being penalized for an unscheduled engine change.
The engineers were aware of a potential risk in general terms with the 056 engine fitted to Kimi's car, which was on its second race, given that the con rods were part of the same batch used on Felipe's engine. Changing the engine on Kimi's car would have seen the Finn start from far down the grid.
Raikkonens retirement means that the world champion has now gone eight races without a victory and currently trails standings leader Lewis Hamilton by 13 points. Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali, however, is backing the Finn to bounce back.
Of course, it's easy when things are going well, said Domenicali on Ferraris official website. Everyone close to you puts their arms on your shoulders to say you are number one, number one, number one, But then suddenly when you have a difficult situation, then they say, ha ha, this is already finished.
"That's not the case with Kimi. He's the world champion, we are a team, and of course we will support everyone in the team, and above all, of course Kimi, because we trust him 100 per cent. It's in the difficult moments that the team has to stay together. We don't have any doubt at all about Kimi's performance and I'm pretty sure he will come back between here and the end in Brazil."