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Kimi Raikkonen Q&A - P14 a shame, as Ferrari ‘felt pretty good’

23 Jul 2016

Saturday’s unpredictable conditions in Hungary were always going to throw up the odd surprise or two, and arguably the biggest was Kimi Raikkonen’s absence from Q3 after he failed to get a quick Q2 lap in at the right time. The Ferrari star hence starts 14th on the grid, but that doesn’t mean he’s ruling out a strong result tomorrow…

Q: Kimi, this afternoon you were caught on the wrong foot...

Kimi Raikkonen: …yes, it really was a shame where we’ve ended up, because the car felt pretty good. But I think others were caught as well, so all will depend on what you do in the first three corners tomorrow. I think we could have probably done things differently - but in hindsight you are always smarter. We will definitely learn from it.

Q: Is this track going to be difficult for you in the same way that Monaco was difficult?

KR: Well, this is a ‘normal’ circuit - nothing in the mould of Monaco. Here you can overtake - yes, not so easy as some other circuits, but you can. And that is what we will do tomorrow. So I think we do have the chance to have a good race. I am sure we will come up with something and improve the position.

Q: You indicated that the car feels a lot better this weekend than was the case at Silverstone. Is this due to the different track, or has Ferrari come up with something in the last 10 days?

KR: Well, it is probably down to the circuit - and the conditions. Silverstone probably had not the best layout for us, so I expect this here to be a lot better. For sure that didn’t show this afternoon, but hopefully tomorrow afternoon.

Q: So if you take away today and look back to the Friday runs, what do you expect for the race - especially if it stays dry?

KR: I have to say wet or dry doesn’t really matter, as the car was also behaving nicely in the wet. So whatever it is tomorrow, I don’t mind. I am aware that from where I start it will not be easy and as I said before, the paramount thing is to get through the first three corners without contact - and from there it should roll on. Regarding the strategy, we will see what happens in the first part of the race. My guess is that we will see a lot of red flags in the race and one or the other safety car. So all I can hope is that when it happens it catches me in the right moment. But that can be a lottery.

Q: A lot of people complained that the safety car stayed out too long at Silverstone, but in Q1 here the conditions were worse. Was it too early to go out?

KR: You cannot compare. And there are always critics from all different places. And here we had to stop Q1 because of severe aquaplaning and impossible visibility due to spray. Probably starting Q1 again you could argue that we could have started two laps later - but that you only know in hindsight. And the most important thing is that everything stayed safe.

Q: Can we talk over your Q2 session, which brought an end to your grid ambitions? You switched from intermediate tyres to slicks. Was that your decision or the team’s?

KR: As the team oversees who is putting on what kind of tyres in what situation, it is normal that they react. Again in hindsight you could argue whether we should have done this, or should have done things different - but that is water under the bridge and that is part of the game. Sometimes things come your way - sometimes not. In the end, with so many red flags and so many aborted laps this is something that you never can plan in advance. You have to react to a certain situation - and sometimes you pick the short end. But the car felt good - and that is all that matters.