A Mouthful of Oxygen
Let’s say that I’m not too thrilled about sixth place, but considering the circumstances I’m glad I gained these three points, the first of this season for me and the team. It wasn’t the start to the season as we had expected, but that’s how it went. Three points are not much, considering that the championship leader won the race but it’s still better than nothing. Finally, bringing home both cars, we’ve made a small step foward. Now we’re ready to make the most important thing, hoping that it will enable us to fight for the top positions.
The race at Sahkir was the hottest of the season. It was really hard work, but I did not have any problems; I really liked it, because that means that the hard preparations during the winter bears fruits.
The F60 did fine in Bahrain, although we lacked some speed. The set-up was good, especially with the softer tyres. The trend seems to be confirmed that our cars run better in higher temperatures. A fifth place might have been possible, but we lost some precious seconds due to the small problem during the final pit-stop, otherwise I would have rejoined infront of Rubens although then it would have been difficult keeping him under control. I fought with Glock’s Toyota, although I had the harder compound, but my car was faster on the straight; that was enough to keep him behind me.
I’ve been asked how many points we’ve thrown away during the first races. It’s difficult to reply, but most of all I don’t want to continue talking about the mistakes and problems that we’ve had. As usual, we have to look ahead; the past is the past and we can’t change it. The most important thing is that now there is an important development of the car coming up. The Team works an awful lot to improvement the performance for the next race in Barcelona, although we know that the other teams are doing the same. Let’s hope that we can make a bigger step forward than the other teams. If we manage to gain at least three tenths of a second then we will be able to fight for more than just sixth place.
Before we start thinking again about the championship, we’ve got to see what we can do at Barcelona. It’s obvious that the situation in difficult, especially because there is a driver who has won three out of four races. Obviously I won’t surrender, but we’ve got to get back onto the podium as soon as possible and make the car faster so we are able to fight for the win as of mid-season.
These days I’m following one of my preferred sports; ice-hockey. The world championships are held in Switzerland and Finland is playing at an ice rink close to my house. I hope my team will continue to win, as last night against Denmark, the first match I’ve watched. I’ll try to go to the stadium as often as possible, I know several players and I’m really enjoying watching them playing live.
I’m glad he didn’t find the heat in Bahrain too bad, as he trained a
lot in the season preparations he said. I felt bad to see Alonso was so
badly dehydrated, as he had no water!
Anyways, Kimi is so mature and he has a well-thought out
mentality about the championship situation – I can’t believe people
question his attitude towards the team. I doubt he’ll be treated any kinder despite scoring the first points for Ferrari but watch the 2009 Bahrain GP Highlights that i posted last night and you’ll hopefully share in my sense of feeling better things to come. Of course, he has to mention the ice-hockey in this column and it was just so cool to see Kimi so happy and relaxed:
The Iceman was at the ice-hockey match between Finland and
Denmark in Switzerland yesterday evening. Kimi, sitting in the audience in
his black cap and jeans, was shown on television with the "Formula One
Champion 2007" tagline and he happily waved back with a mate (more pictures here courtesy of Vakie, including the video below). Kimi rushed from Bahrain
to Switzerland to make it in time for the game. Ain’t that sweet, the
lad’s enjoying his time and he loves his ice hockey so goes to see it
whenever he can. Kimi is awesome! And he’ll probably be at the next match this Wednesday. Keep Flying Kimi!
Autosport’s full race report | Formula1.com Results & Fastest Laps Classification | FIA Race Lap Analysis
Pos Driver Team Time
1. Button Brawn GP-Mercedes (B) 1h31:48.182
2. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) + 7.187
3. Trulli Toyota (B) + 9.170
4. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) + 22.096
5. Barrichello Brawn GP-Mercedes (B) + 37.779
6. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) + 42.057
7. Glock Toyota (B) + 42.880
8. Alonso Renault (B) + 52.775
9. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) + 58.198
10. Piquet Renault (B) + 1:05.149
11. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) + 1:07.641
12. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) + 1:17.824
13. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) + 1:18.805
14. Massa Ferrari (B) + 1 lap
15. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) + 1 lap
16. Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) + 1 lap
17. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) + 1 lap
18. Kubica BMW Sauber (B) + 1 lap
19. Heidfeld BMW Sauber (B) + 1 lap
Fastest lap: Trulli, 1:34.556
Not classified/retirements:Driver Team On lap
Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) 49
Breaking News & Quotes (Autosport.com):
Howett wary of McLaren, Ferrari
Montezemolo blames rules for poor start
Ferrari clarifies Schumacher's role
Massa bemoans very troubled race
Bahrain Sunday quotes: Bridgestone
Q & A with Stefano Domenicali
Ferrari Team Quotes: Kimi Raikkonen - 6th: "I am happy to have picked up a few points but I can't be that pleased with our performance level. I've been around long enough not to get very excited about a sixth place. We are well aware we have to improve. In theory, the new package we will have in Barcelona should see us make a good step forward, but we won't know just how big it will be compared to the others until we are on track in Spain. Today, we got the most out of the F60's current potential, even if I lost a bit of time in my final pit stop because of a problem with a part of the fairing on the left front wheel which cost me the chance of exiting pit lane ahead of Barrichello."
Nice one Kimi! I know 6th place and three points seem like nothing after such a long and hot race but that was a relief! Well done my boy. I do find it funny that Ferrari seemed to have performed better as Luca di Montezemolo made his appearance this weekend. He was on the pit wall watching everything. But well done to the team for turning a difficult situation into some points. A big warm congratulation to Brawn GP and Jenson Button - they really rubbed it in today, by giving that flawless performance in a much more challenging race with Red Bull and the Toyotas. This is what winning truly feels like, Jenson! Vettel also showed further excellence in driving a hard and competitive race in the dry and not only the wet. Trulli could've won today but it still would've been hard against Button, so Trulli's third place isn't so bad. I believe Toyota still need to learn a lot during races before they actually start winning. Hamilton on the other hand has been there, done that, and his fourth place for McLaren was a great effort. But an even better effort came from Kimi...
I'd like to go through Kimi's race in detail for a change. So Kimi started 10th, on the inside behind Massa. And off Kimi went; he had a much better start despite being heavier on fuel and, like I guessed he would, made a dash to the outside to pass as many cars into braking for T1. Massa was on Kimi's target and Kimi gave him a nice birthday present - "kiss my ass!". Quite literally as Massa was being squeezed from Kimi on the left and another car on the right, Massa's front wing clipped Kimi's rear right tyre. Whoops. Then Kimi made it past Barrichello and was in 5th place after the first two corners! Wow! But then Barrichello was close enough to fight back and re-took 5th position. Massa's wing was damaged and he soon had to pit for a replacement, rejoined back into 16th, and his whole race was effectively ruined by that contact with Kimi but that wasn't Kimi's fault at all. It was more to do with Big Nose Barrichello butting in all the time. Anyway, the Bahrain GP start was one of the best I've ever seen, this year at least. There were three groups of fighting going on, fantastic.
Since Barrichello re-took position from Kimi, the front field were disappearing and Kimi was soon left on his own with Fernando Alonso a few seconds behind. Kimi was heavy on fuel, heavier than everyone else infront. His first stint was very important, so while he was distant, he kept pushing. It was soon lap 15 where Kimi was up into second place after the rest had their pitstops, and he was 13 seconds off Vettel in the lead. Kimi was doing good, making most of the strategy he was on. Lap 19 showed Kimi leading the race - yay! Alas, it weren't to remain that way as the car's slow and shit and Kimi was yet to pit obviously. I could daydream for a moment though, on this lovely, sunny and hazy Sunday afternoon. At least the KERS wasn't anything to daydream about - it was performing well today, for Kimi at least! Meanwhile, as Kimi was leading, Massa was down in 15th. The time finally came then on lap 21, as planned, for Kimi's pitstop. He was pitted for 10 seconds and 28 laps worth of fuel was injected, his tyres were changed to used softs, and Kimi rejoined the race into 8th place. Massa lingered in 14th.
All was going well - Kimi moved up to 7th position on lap 23, 27 seconds off the lead and Kimi's fastest lap classified at 1.35.716. He moved up another spot for 6th position and Kimi wasn't going to pit for another 20 laps or so. Kimi was lapping faster than Timo Glock infront and once Glock pitted, Kimi was back into that lovely 5th position he had for a moment at the start of the race. Massa at this time was worse off in 18th place, showing considerable brake dust from his front left tyre after the pits straight.
As three other cars pitted, Kimi was in 3rd position by lap 37 and he was looking strong for a good bag of points, granted nothing went wrong with the car. Thankfully, the car was safe in his hands. Around lap 40, Kimi was in 2nd place, 22 seconds behind leader Vettel and Massa was struggling in 13th. Kimi then set his personal best lap time. Our Flying Finn was getting faster at this stage of the race. As Vettel pitted from the lead, Kimi was leading the race! Oh my God! It's been a long time. Ahhhh. Kimi only just managed to stay infront of Vettel as the Red Bull came out the pits. By then, Massa was in 11th position.
Kimi's second and final pitstop arrived on lap 44 and medium tyres were thrown on and he was pitted for the end. He could have been in the fight for fifth with Barrichello if he "had not encountered a problem at his final pit stop because of the fairing on the left rear wheel." Timo Glock in the Toyota looked to be infront of Kimi as the Ferrari exited the pits and rolled down to T1 but Kimi kept it together and used the benefit of the KERS to pass Glock for 7th place. From then on, Glock was on Kimi's tail and it seemed Kimi wouldn't be able to hold onto 7th place for much longer. Another car pitted, so Kimi and Glock moved up to 6th and 7th position. David Coulthard and Martin Brundle still managed to say something against Kimi today, saying he was asleep after he pitted and didn't see Glock. Oh for heavens sake, just shut up. He wasn't asleep, he very well knew where Glock was but didn't want to be too drastic in defense or offense. Kimi got so far already in that Ferrari and he didn't want to be aggressive and ruin his race by damaging his car over a single point. A two-stop strategy worked out nicely for Kimi and the team.
In the final stage of the race, it was Glock versus Raikkonen and Kimi did his best to stay infront, even when Glock braked very closely to Kimi, sliding into the last corner, and they nearly touched but Kimi was unharmed and now Glock had a bigger gap and so this battle ended there. With a big sigh of relief, Kimi finished the race in 6th place with Glock just behind. Well done Kimi! I know that was tough! Massa finished 14th after desperately pushing Fisichella in the Force India off track.
There you have it. Ferrari have scored their first points of the 2009 championship with Kimi Raikkonen. This was Kimi's 100th Grand Prix finish and his 85th finish in points, so congratulations to him for that (even if he doesn't care for statistics, the number 100 is always nice, hehe. Kimi's total career points is at 534). I'm looking forward to Spain as hopefully Kimi can continue to improve and score more points and it won't be too long before a podium comes along, with some luck. Kimi's post race comments are that of a champion - he's not excited like us with a 6th place. He wants better results and that itself should be enough motivation for the team to start scoring podiums and winning when we get to Europe next.
That was a great start of the race by Kimi, so that was the highlight of the day for me. Most race pictures are already uploaded in the Bahrain GP photo album and catch the race videos, including Kimi's re-pass on Glock. I can't wait to work on the highlight video! Keep Flying! ~
Full qualifying report can be read here
Pos Driver Team Q1 Q2 Q3Breaking News & Quotes:
1. Trulli Toyota (B) 1:32.779 1:32.671 1:33.431
2. Glock Toyota (B) 1:33.165 1:32.613 1:33.712
3. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:32.680 1:32.474 1:34.015
4. Button Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:32.978 1:32.842 1:34.044
5. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:32.851 1:32.877 1:34.196
6. Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:33.116 1:32.842 1:34.239
7. Alonso Renault (B) 1:33.627 1:32.860 1:34.578
8. Massa Ferrari (B) 1:33.297 1:33.014 1:34.818
9. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) 1:33.672 1:33.166 1:35.134
10. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) 1:33.117 1:32.827 1:35.380
11. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:33.479
12. Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) 1:33.221
13. Kubica BMW-Sauber (B) 1:33.495
14. Heidfeld BMW-Sauber (B) 1:33.377
15. Piquet Renault (B) 1:33.608
16. Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:33.722
17. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:33.753
18. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:33.910
19. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:34.038
20. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:34.159
Hamilton targets podium finish
Button says Brawn no longer ahead
Delighted Trulli fears more brake issues
Bahrain Saturday quotes: Bridgestone
Webber angry after qualifying 'disaster'
Alonso stays realistic for the race
Post-qualifying car weights - Kimi: 671.5kg, Massa: 664.5kg
Ferrari to use KERS on both cars : At Sakhir the Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro’s
technicians decided in the usual meeting for the debriefing in the
evening after Friday’s free practice sessions that the F60s driven by
Massa and Raikkonen will be fitted with the KERS as of tomorrow. The
kinetic energy recovery system, the Scuderia has been testing during
the winter here in Bahrain, will be present on both cars as of
tomorrow, just as the two drivers have hoped for.
Ferrari Team Quotes: Kimi Raikkonen: "It would have been difficult
to do better than tenth. In the first two parts of qualifying, the car
handled better than we had expected, but in Q3 I no longer had any new
soft tyres, having already used all four sets. The car's performance
has improved with KERS. Tomorrow, the race will be very tough because
of the high temperatures. Let's see what we manage to do. The aim is to
finish in the points."
That was a really good day for Kimi I think, based on what the results
alone show. He showed good pace in both Q1 and Q2, lapping his times
infront of Massa. Both Kimi and Massa were using KERS and they will be for the race too. So that was pleasing to see!
Kimi's doing well. For Q3, he definately took on a lot more
fuel than Massa for the race. Check the post-qualifying car weights! Apparently, this just in, according to
the Finnish media Kimi actually had to do his final run on used soft
tyres as the team made him use the rest in extra attempts during Q1 and
Q2. Oh dear. That's not a good call by the team. They must have worried
about missing out on Q3 like Massa did in Malaysia? But Kimi wasn't
Massa today, Kimi was actually showing better pace. So
on worn out soft tyres, Kimi couldn't do better than 10th, obviously.
Thanks a lot Ferrari! Courtesy of Wolfie, here is what Kimi told
reporters after qualifying:
"I wouldn't have wanted to come out to the track
for the second time in the 1st and 2nd stint but the team wanted me to
go. After that there wasn't any new tyres left," Räikkönen said about
the Italians' tactic in MTV3 Max."
Meanwhile, until further quotes and information are released, check out the high resolution pictures from Bahrain! Couple of cool shots in there. The
Toyota team must be so happy for getting an all front row, so congratulations to them. Hamilton did
a good job today by keeping his nose in the action at the front. The
Brawn GP cars are obviously not as powerful as we feared. I'm sure
Ferrari will join in the fun very soon. Looks like Kimi and the Robertsons met David Coulthard in the paddock today, I wonder what were the words being exchanged here? It looks pretty healthy: "Hey David, piss off!"
both Ferraris made
it into the top 10. Massa has always been strong at Bahrain so it's
good for him that he's been able to show that today. But like I said,
Kimi was clearly outpacing him in the first two qualifying sessions, so
I don't think Massa is that faster than Kimi at Bahrain actually! In
2007 and 2008, Kimi was always behind Massa, for various reasons
(tyres, understeer, set-up). But I think Kimi seems to perform much
better with the F60, handling wise - it has more oversteer and that
helps him in the slow corners that he struggled in before. Yes the
car's slow anyway, but that's different from telling whether the driver
is comfortable or uncomfortable with the car. Also, it's hot and dry
and now we can see what the cars are really like, hopefully if the race
stays dry and hot too. The Ferrari isn't that bad at all, and without
the mistakes and suitable conditions they can do quite well. Kimi and
Massa will start the race on the inside line of the straight, a bit
dusty there so not expecting an awesome get away towards turn 1. I
expect Kimi to try and get onto the outside line as soon as possible to
gain positions through turn 1 and 2. It's now revealed that Kimi will
be using KERS tomorrow for the race, so that should help pass a few
cars on the first lap. Hoping for a podium isn't asking
for a miracle, certainly if how the Ferrari are performing this weekend
is anything to go by. Whatever happens, I believe in Kimi and that
belief will never stop. Keep Flying Kimi ~
Full practice report can be read here
Pos Driver Team Time Laps
1. Glock Toyota (B) 1:32.605 16
2. Massa Ferrari (B) 1:32.728 + 0.123 20
3. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) 1:32.906 + 0.301 18
4. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:32.975 + 0.370 16
5. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) 1:32.986 + 0.381 18
6. Piquet Renault (B) 1:33.176 + 0.571 19
7. Kubica BMW Sauber (B) 1:33.195 + 0.590 13
8. Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) 1:33.302 + 0.697 17
9. Trulli Toyota (B) 1:33.397 + 0.792 19
10. Heidfeld BMW Sauber (B) 1:33.415 + 0.810 14
11. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:33.443 + 0.838 16
12. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:33.478 + 0.873 12
13. Alonso Renault (B) 1:33.482 + 0.877 13
14. Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:33.534 + 0.929 17
15. Button Brawn GP-Mercedes (B) 1:33.586 + 0.981 17
16. Barrichello Brawn GP-Mercedes (B) 1:33.686 + 1.081 17
17. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:33.720 + 1.115 15
18. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:33.726 + 1.121 14
19. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:33.962 + 1.357 15
20. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:34.990 + 2.385 7
Free Practice 2 – Rosberg Quickest
Full practice report can be read here
Breaking News & Quotes:
1. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) 1:33.339 36
2. Alonso Renault (B) 1:33.530 + 0.191 25
3. Trulli Toyota (B) 1:33.616 + 0.277 37
4. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:33.661 + 0.322 29
5. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:33.676 + 0.337 32
6. Button Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:33.694 + 0.355 35
7. Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:33.763 + 0.424 30
8. Glock Toyota (B) 1:33.764 + 0.425 37
9. Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:33.885 + 0.546 30
10. Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) 1:33.899 + 0.560 36
11. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:33.994 + 0.655 30
12. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:34.025 + 0.686 23
13. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:34.127 + 0.788 37
14. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:34.366 + 1.027 26
15. Piquet Renault (B) 1:34.411 + 1.072 29
16. Massa Ferrari (B) 1:34.564 + 1.225 34
17. Kubica BMW-Sauber (B) 1:34.605 + 1.266 31
18. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) 1:34.670 + 1.331 28
19. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:34.764 + 1.425 35
20. Heidfeld BMW-Sauber (B) 1:34.790 + 1.451 33
Button predicts very tight qualifying
FOTA budget cap response not ready
Hill: F1 could still return to Silverstone
Government not willing to pay for GP
McLaren sends written apology to FIA
Ferrari looking for right balance
Ferrari Team Quotes: Kimi Raikkonen - 18th: "Even if we don't know what
fuel loads the other teams had, it's clear that we are not as quick as
we would like, but we have to try and make the best of this situation.
Anyway, we knew that the picture for this race would be no different to
what we've seen in previous ones. Today we opted to run in two
different configurations and did a lot of work on finding the best
set-up for the car. We collected a lot of data which we will now
analyse, to be as well prepared as possible for the race. We can expect
a difficult weekend, but we were never in any doubt about that."
Oh well that session was not much better, but without the KERS on Kimi's car what can we expect! But it's the race that counts so let's just be quiet and watch aye. By the way, there are a couple of clips, one of Kimi's spin in the first session.
Free Practice 1 - Hamilton Fastest
Full practice report can be read here
...Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen was lucky to complete the session in tenth. The Finn was one of several drivers to have a moment, but his involved a lurid slide that saw him just miss the barriers at Turn 2 right at the start of practice...
Pos Driver Team Time LapsBreaking News & Quotes:
1. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:33.647 + 19
2. Heidfeld BMW Sauber (B) 1:33.907 + 0.260 17
3. Kubica BMW Sauber (B) 1:33.938 + 0.291 17
4. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) 1:34.227 + 0.580 24
5. Button Brawn GP-Mercedes (B) 1:34.434 + 0.787 15
6. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:34.502 + 0.855 24
7. Barrichello Brawn GP-Mercedes (B) 1:34.531 + 0.884 18
8. Massa Ferrari (B) 1:34.589 + 0.942 17
9. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:34.827 + 1.180 21
10. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) 1:34.827 + 1.180 19
11. Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) 1:34.880 + 1.233 24
12. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:34.938 + 1.291 21
13. Piquet Renault (B) 1:34.974 + 1.327 21
14. Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:35.021 + 1.374 18
15. Trulli Toyota (B) 1:35.036 + 1.389 22
16. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:35.042 + 1.395 16
17. Glock Toyota (B) 1:35.333 + 1.686 20
18. Alonso Renault (B) 1:35.348 + 1.701 24
19. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:35.353 + 1.706 22
20. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:35.369 + 1.722 15
Ecclestone: Inaction a disgrace
Ecclestone: British GP doubt no shock
Ferrari - Nothing new under the sun: The two Ferraristi drove the eighth and tenth fastest lap times, with
Felipe Massa (1.34.589) and Kimi Raikkonen (1.34.827) respectively.They
both were not really satisfied with the car’s set up. Drivers and
engineers will have to do some more work over the next hours to improve
the F60’s performance. Only Felipe’s car is fitted with the KERS: in
the evening the Team will decide how to proceed over the rest of the
weekend as far as the kinetic energy recovery system is concerned. The
two Ferraristi did the same work in the morning, with slightly
different approaches: the track, which is still pretty dirty, enabled
Felipe to go out for two runs, with the first one slightly longer,
while Kimi drove the usual three. Both drivers used just one set of
tyres, the harder compound of the two types Bridgestone brought to
I didn't watch practice today so I'm not sure how close Kimi missed the barrier! His fastest laptime is okay, absolutely identical to Mark Webber in the Red Bull - funny that! Let's wait and see how things turn out later today in the second session.
DRIVERS: Timo GLOCK (Toyota), Robert KUBICA (BMW Sauber), Nelson PIQUET (Renault), Kimi RAIKKONEN (Ferrari) Below are selected quotes from Raikkonen.
Kimi RAIKKONEN: I mean definitely not what we wanted or what
I wanted either but we don’t have the speed right now in the car
unfortunately. We are going to get some new parts at the next race but
this race probably can be a bit difficult again. Hopefully the testing
here helps a bit and it will be slightly better for us but I don’t know
yet. We need to wait and see.
Q. Kimi, when are you likely to be using KERS again?
KR: I don’t use it tomorrow. The other car will run it and
then we will make the decision which way we go. We either take it and
use it if we don’t have any issues with it and we will put it also in
my car but really we want to look a little bit and compare the two cars
with and without and see a little difference. That’s our main thing
Q. You have never seemed to be a massive fan of KERS.
KR: It is probably faster in quite a few places but the car
was not too bad the last race in qualifying. I think we could have been
faster even there but we had an issue with it. It is not much different
driving with or without it for us.
Q. The diffuser modifications. When would you expect to get that?
KR: Hopefully we will have the new parts for the next race in Barcelona.
Q. You have been second and third here in the past and you tested
here as well, so are you feeling a little bit more confident about this?
KR: Like I said, hopefully the testing at the beginning of
this year will help us this week. It has usually been okay for us. Of
course we are not in the position we were the last few years right now
but I still think we should have a better chance here than maybe at
some previous races.
Q. (Joris Fioriti – AFP) You were just talking about the Red Bull performance in China. Were you surprised by it?
TG: For me they were quite strong already at the tests and at
the end they developed from race to race. The race in Australia showed
already the pace. Sebastian (Vettel) was in P2 in the race and in
Malaysia as well they were quick, so for me it is not a big surprise
but I think they made a little step or they were maybe just a little
bit better sorted out. The temperatures in Shanghai were quite cold
compared to the other races and maybe that is part of the difference
but for me they looked strong in testing.
KR: Yeah, I mean they have been looking fast every race. Like
Timo said they were a bit stronger in the last race. I don’t know if
they got some new parts or not but they have definitely been strong all
Q. (Bill Johnson – The National) Principally to you, Kimi: are
you surprised at those who are making the early running in this
season’s drivers’ championship and if so do you welcome the so-called
new kids on the block getting onto the podium that you used to regard
as your own territory?
KR: It’s normal for them to be there. I don’t think that they
are new in Formula One. It’s not a big surprise. Those teams were fast
in the winter testing. We are missing speed right now. Hopefully we can
turn it around pretty quickly, I expect at the next race. They are
welcome. For sure we would rather be there but right now we are not in
a position to fight for those positions, so we just need to make the
best (performance) as we can here and then hopefully get back to where
we should be in the next race.
Q. (Dan Knutson – National Speed Sport News) For all of you:
we’ve had four races in five weeks. In the past you would all be going
testing next week. Are you looking forward to the time off or would you
prefer to be going off and trying lots of news parts?
KR: When you have a situation like the one we are in, it
would probably be nice to try the new parts before the race but that’s
how it is, we’re having some time off, so we go to the next race and
sort it out there.
Q. Robert, Kimi, does it mean you will probably go to the factory and go through everything and maybe some simulation?
RK: We go to the factory, of course, but I think the problem
for everybody is known, so you don’t need additional input from the
driver. We don’t have simulators, so there will be no simulation but of
course we try to help the team as much as we can from the driver point
of view but as I said, I think the problem is known by everybody and
there is no need for additional meetings or things like that.
KR: Similar story, all the people are working one
hundred percent, they know what they’re doing. It’s more the time
that’s against us than anything else. I have some other work to do
anyhow. I don’t know if I will go to the factory or not. If they need
me, yes, but people know what they’re doing. We usually plan the
meetings if we need something but we are here and we always discuss all
those things, so it probably won’t be necessary to go there.
KR: For sure I want to score points but I don’t feel any
pressure. We try to do our best every time and unfortunately we haven’t
managed to score any points so far. We are all one team and we all
don’t feel so good when we have bad races but that’s how it is right
now unfortunately. We do the best that we can here and hopefully we get
Q. (Ian Parkes – The Press Association) Kimi, can you believe you
are in this position after three races without a point compared to 18
months ago when you were World Champion?
KR: Things change quickly in Formula One, we know that. There
are new rules. Of course we had pretty good winter testing. We probably
saw in the last test that we were not where we wanted to be, exactly,
but it hasn’t been the start of the season that we were looking for as
a team but we just need to work harder and improve the situation and
get back to where we want to be. We know that we can do it but it takes
a while. That’s unfortunately the situation where we are.
Q. (Joris Fioriti – AFP) Do you think you are far away from Red Bull and Brawn GP?
KR: We are probably one second behind them, so I
think it depends a bit from circuit to circuit but that’s more or less
where we are and we know that, so we are aiming to catch them up and of
course, when you’re once behind, it’s not easy because everybody is
also going forward, so it’s hard to catch up completely but for sure we
are going to get much closer next race.
I think that wasn’t as bad as I was expecting, I thought Kimi was going to be attacked or have shoes thrown at me, which seems to be the trend lately. According to a Finnish MTV3 report, in the same press conference Kimi was asked about David Coulthard’s recent criticism towards him and Kimi replied:
Video and Translation courtesy of Vakie
Finnish: "Emmä vielä yhtään kuljettajaa tiedä
ketkä suunnittelee auton, että tuota, hauska sitten aina.. kova
kommentoimaan kaveri, kun ei oo ikinä voittanu mitään formula ykkösissä
oikeestaan, että.. sen oma asia, aika erikoinen kaveri."
English: "I don’t know of any driver so far who designs the cars,
so it’s quite funny.. to always hear these comments from a guy who has
never really won much of anything in F1, so.. that’s his business, what
a peculiar guy."
Whitmarsh: "Kimi doesn’t always show it but based on my
experience from the time Kimi was here Kimi was a very committed driver
when it came to development work. When he spoke his few words, they
were always valuable. He is very sensitive when it comes to getting the car to go faster
and to what happens to the car."
Anyway, that’s the end of that then. Sand gusts are predicted this weekend but shouldn’t be a problem during the race unless we get more reports. It’s just as well that Kimi won’t be using KERS as it’ll be humid and sandy, and the KERS hasn’t proven to be that reliable in the Ferrari yet. Check out all the photos from today in Bahrain GP 2009 album!
There’s another interview today but this time it is actually mine! Octeto Racing Team Blog is a brilliant Portugeuse motorsport fan blog, based on eight drivers (Octeto) and Kimi is one of their favourites. Ludy considers me to be the most famous Kimi fan in the world, and I admit that’s really overwhelming actually. Bizarre. Octeto regularly share KRS updates with their fans too, particularly the highlight videos. They’re a great bunch of girls and very intelligent and like me – fans of Kimi. So it was a pleasure for me to be part of their work, which was a serie of interviews of other readers, and I think the questions asked by Ludy are really good so well done to her. So I hope you enjoy what is my first interview. Obrigada, Ludy!
in London and have been here all 21 years of my life. I’m in my final
year at university, studying Journalism. I chose Journalism mainly
because of my passion for writing and particularly following Formula
One. I’ve been watching it for the past 12 years or so. I hope one day
that I could become a reporter and meet all the drivers and stars in
the pit-lane and paddock, and get to go to all the races and be close
to the action! I’m a huge fan of Kimi since 2002 and use my fan-site
blog dedicated to him and his fans to keep my interest in both F1 and
Kimi is a really special human being. Not only
in regards to his job but he has this energetic light in his eyes, that
shines in anything that he does. He is the fastest driver on earth and
I can say that easily. Watching him ‘grow’ in F1 has been an amazing
experience as a fan, because although he has matured and become wiser
than he already was, he hasn’t let fame or success or defeat affect
him. His talent is something I really admire, not just for being really
fast but he has his values and he puts them first and will not
sacrifice them no matter how much the media and what people think. They
try to break him but he somehow manages to completely reject any
interference in his life because he loves his family and friends and
his privacy. He may be the fastest guy on the planet and extremely
popular, for both positive and negative reasons, but he has never let
it climb over him. I think that’s a very admirable attitude that he
carries. I’m very lucky, that I’ve been able to get to know so many
people all over the world just by being a Kimi Raikkonen supporter. I’m
only ‘famous’ in the fan community because I try to give what the fans
deserve and I’m really happy that I’ve reached a lot of them through
doing so. As I’m a fan myself I know what I’d like to see and
experience and because I enjoy it so much it’s even a better feeling
being able to do it for the rest of us. It has brought a lot of good
things to everyone, including myself and I treasure it. I have to thank
3. When and why F1 came into your life?
I used to watch F1 anyway with my brother as a kid, he was the reason I
got hooked on motorsport, as no one else I knew did! I remember every
Sunday afternoon when my mum would make a big lunch, my brother and I
would just watch those red and silver cars fight for the win (Hakkinen
and Schumacher!) I was too small to understand the racing, all the
tenths of a second and the pitstops and things – I just liked watching
the cars. But only during the 2000s, I became more active in following
the sport, reading F1 magazines and using the internet to see news and
stuff. I think as I was growing up, I wasn’t the typical girl who did
girly things, who liked to gossip and talk about boys and wear make up.
That wasn’t me. So when I was seriously interested in a sport like F1,
I really did feel like an alien, especially at school! None of my
friends cared about it. But I’m grateful for my brother and my family,
who let me enjoy what I wanted and not criticize me. I’m an even bigger
fan than my brother himself now!
hard is for you to live in the land of Lewis Hamilton being Kimi’s fan?
Do you suffer some kind of prejudice because of that?
It’s natural, all the countries are somewhat ignorant to the other
country’s drivers. So I don’t get too angry or question it. What can
you do, apart from write and share about it! I had a funny experience,
during the British Grand Prix in 2007. At that GP, Hamilton was the
man, obviously. The race was sold out, with more fans coming than in
recent years, all because of Hamilton and the excitement he brought to
the sport. But as one of the few Kimi fans, I didn’t mind. I had my
Kimi flag and was proud. I did get some strange abuse from
British/Hamilton fans, on both Saturday qualifying and Sunday race day.
Someone would say “who would want to see that banner” or “get that
f*cking flag out of my face”. But I just laughed. And you might already
know I did come on TV both days with my Kimi flag. Kimi won that race,
so I was extremely happy and didn’t care what others thought. Spanish
anti-Hamilton fans get in the news for being racist and things, but the
British fans can be just as rude and insulting just because they’re a
Hamilton fan. I know because I’ve experienced it first-hand. It’s not
that hard to deal with though in general, because there aren’t many F1
fans I know here anyway!
I think learning to deal with
disappointment is one of the most hard and common challenges a sport
like F1 can bring. Just as the teams and drivers can get really
disappointed, the fans also feel the same. Especially as Kimi fan,
because he had a lot of bad times especially at McLaren (with poor
reliability and sometimes just fate it seems). It’s very frustrating
and hard to accept at first, but I think each time it gets easier and
the same applies to personal lives. A good example is what happened at
the Belgian GP in 2008. Kimi already was having a hard year but he did
really well and was just a few laps away from winning the race, at his
favourite circuit. It ended very bitterly; it rained and the duel with
Hamilton got too messy (although great to watch), and then Kimi crashed
out. It was like going to heaven and hell all in 5 minutes. It was
really bad for Kimi, which meant I felt bad myself. But I coped with it
much better than I did with his disappointments in 2005 and 2006. You
get disappointments in life, if something does not go your way. But the
thing I’ve learnt is that it happens and you just have to keep moving
and be mature about it. Kimi, in this case, is a great role model for
me. He’s very strong, mentally. And that’s why I always cheer him on
with the motto “Keep flying Kimi”. I also told my brother the same
thing recently, when we had some big disappointments at home. I told
him to keep moving, and he does.
6. What about the British champions? Do you have a favorite one?
wasn’t watching F1 when we had our previous British champions
unfortunately! Lewis Hamilton is the only British champion I’ve
witnessed and although his achievements are very impressive indeed, I
won’t say anything else as I can’t compare him with older generations,
with the different cars and what not.
worst moment…oh there are too many! The worst event has to be the US GP
at Indianapolis 2005 when only 3 teams raced. The worst ‘moment’
though, as in a very short time, is Kimi’s last lap front suspension
failure at the Nurburgring in 2005. The best moment is still Kimi’s
last lap overtaking manouvre on Fisichella at the Japanese GP in 2005.
I would have said when he became champion at Brazil in 2007 but that
was so unbelievable that it didn’t sink in until a few days later, even
though I cried when he accepted his trophy on the podium!
think it’s generally good for everyone involved. Women have been
working in F1 more than ever in the past decade or so. Although the
majority of women work mainly in public relations, most female fans of
the sport certainly are just as hardcore as the males when it comes to
the racing. I have seen that some men can’t handle a women’s opinion,
which is a bit surprising. It’s like being back at nursery. Boys have
their toys and when a girl wants the same to play with, the boys go
extra defensive. I think it’s just nature!
9. What are the skills a driver needs to be a world champion?
to be champion are the same as what they needed to get into F1 with!
Quick, smooth and aggressive all in one. And a lot of the time, it
depends on the car more than the driver nowadays. The driver can have
all the skills in the world, but the car isn’t able to serve the
driver. I think the drivers have to be quick in all conditions (wet and
dry), to make sure they’re the most competitive candidate for the
championship. And a bit of luck!
Again, I have only witnessed
less than a third of F1’s history. So from the drivers I know, it has
to be Kimi Raikkonen. Closely followed by Fernando Alonso.
11. What do you think about Felipe Massa?
good, real good. But nothing special, in my opinion! He is really
quick, but so are 19 other drivers on the grid. It’s just the
racing-nature of Massa that I believe is very weak compared to the
others. He has pulled off some great moves though!
My world. I can only be
honest about it. You know, those blank spaces between everything in
your life, your family, your friends, your job/study? Kimi fills up
those spaces for me and he affects everything. There hasn’t been a
single day I haven’t supported him or mentioned his name, since I
became his fan.
13. How you discover Octeto’s blog?
think it was when Octeto mentioned my blog and so I was eager to see
what Octeto was! I visited Octeto and was amazed with how much
information there is on eight great drivers – Kimi being one of them!
14. When you visit Octeto’s blog, how hard for you is the factor foreign language?
too hard. I only speak English but over the years after knowing a lot
of Kimi fans all over the world, I get familiar with different
languages. Octeto comes across really simple I think – so I don’t get
scared or overwhelmed with the language barrier!
15. What do you think about Octeto Racing Team’s blog?
a very refreshing motorsport fan-blog. Definitely the best I’ve seen,
and it is created by intelligent girls who aren’t afraid to show their
passion, and also stay true to themselves and love a bit of glamour!
Finnish translation courtesy of Wolfie
Well, there’s nothing much to tell about the Chinese GP either. It’s
sad that it’s already my third bad weekend in a row. The difficulties
keep going on and we haven’t scored a point yet. It doesn’t help of
course but I’m sure we can’t get any lower than this.
The practice in China was the most difficult. The balance was ok
but we couldn’t find any downforce. We had new parts in the car. I
tried them on Saturday and the car felt immediately better. I got back
a little downforce and the quali went better than what we expected.
The KERS was gone and we lost a few tenths because of that. In the
race I was always behind someone so the KERS would have helped for
sure. But safety reasons decided and we couldn’t use the system.
We continue with zero and it doesn’t make life any easier but I’ve
had bads before. The whole team just has to have the strenght to focus
and we try to do our best. We get a new package to Barcelona and then
we’ll see where we when compared to the others.
These rainy races have sucked. The truth is that I still love to
race on a wet track but now it’s just so difficult when the car lacks
downforce. There’s no traction so all you can do is try to keep the car
on the track, there’s really nothing else you can do.
Next we go to Bahrain and at least there it shouldn’t rain. We had
our winter tests there and it should help us this year too. Of course
the weather is more hot now but when we tested the slicks and the KERS
already in February we can start the jobs a little bit easier.
Ferrari has won the last two races in Bahrain. Of course you can’t
just expect that we would get more speed out of somewhere but I think
we should start scoring points already and hopefully we’ll go to for
The best feelings from the race in China came when Sebastian won.
He’s a great guy and good for him for winning. He drove well and
deserved to win.
We’re with you Kimi! There’s no doubt that as a team, you and Ferrari are working hard. A new day will come…and when the sun will shine it will shine out the clearer! With no rain at Bahrain either! Haha.
Autosport full report | Formula1.com Official Results | FIA Race Analysis PDF
Breaking News & Quotes:Classified:Fastest lap: Barrichello, 1:52.592
Pos Driver Team Time
1. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) 1h57:43.485
2. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) + 10.970
3. Button Brawn GP-Mercedes (B) + 44.975
4. Barrichello Brawn GP-Mercedes (B) + 1:03.704
5. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) + 1:05.102
6. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) + 1:11.866
7. Glock Toyota (B) + 1:14.476
8. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) + 1:16.439
9. Alonso Renault (B) + 1:24.309
10. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) + 1:31.750
11. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) + 1:34.156
12. Heidfeld BMW Sauber (B) + 1:35.834
13. Kubica BMW Sauber (B) + 1:46.853
14. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) + 1 lap
15. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) + 1 lap
16. Piquet Renault (B) + 2 laps
Driver Team On lap
Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) 51
Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) 44
Massa Ferrari (B) 23
Trulli Toyota (B) 19
Tyre strategies - Chinese GP
Webber: Conditions 'right on the edge'
Ferrari not ruling out writing off '09
Ferrari Team Quotes: Kimi Raikkonen - 10th: "In the early stages, it
wasn't too bad but then, after my stop, I lost grip from the tyres and
I was no longer able to push as hard as I wanted, because it meant the
car was sliding a lot. A few times, the engine seemed to lose power,
especially when I found myself close behind other cars, but then the
problem went away on its own. Clearly the championship situation looks
"We have made mistakes and we are not quick enough. In Barcelona,
when we will have new aero parts, we should be able to pick up some of
the grip we are lacking now. I am sure we can be competitive enough to
win again but this work will take time. The team is motivated, I'm sure
of that and we will all do our bit. Now it is easy to criticize, but we
know how to turn things round."
Post-race Interview with Kimi
Q. Tell us about you race, Kimi.
At the beginning it wasn't too bad, but then I didn't really have any
grip, so it was a bit hard to stay on the circuit and all the other
cars were fast, so they got past me.
Q. Was is difficult to get the tyres up to the right temperature?
KR: I don't know if it's the temperature. The thing is we
didn't have grip. It was aqua-planning and sliding and every time I
touched a wet patch I just lost the front end grip. Overall it was very
difficult. In the beginning was not too bad but then, like I said, when
we put a lot of fuel and the new tyres it became more difficult.
Q. Did you have some problems with the engine?
KR: Some times I had something and it wasn't running very
clearly but sometimes it can happen when you follow people and there's
a lot of water and the spray affects it. But it cleared up after a
Q. Three races with no points for Ferrari, what are your thoughts?
KR: Not good. We have made some mistakes but unfortunately we
don't have the speed to be where we want to be right now. But for sure
when we get to Barcelona and get some new parts we should improve quite
a bit. If we had had a dry race today we would have scored some points.
We don't have enough grip in the dry but in the wet it seems to be
even more difficult. We'll do the best that we can and I'm sure we are
going to be back in a position to challenge for wins, but it will take
a little while, so we just need to go through this hard time and we
definitely going to get back.
Q. Is it difficult to find the motivation under this situation?
KR: It's nothing to do with motivation. Unfortunately we are
not fast enough. It's not about people's motivation or that we don't
try the best we can. But it will take a little while. It will not
happen overnight. We know that once we get to Barcelona we should take
a step with the car. Hopefully it will improve the situation and it has
nothing to do with people not trying to do their best.
But it's not an easy sport to catch up and sometimes when you don't
have what you want it just seems to be very difficult and everything
seems to be against you. It's hard to get out of it, but like I said it
takes a while and we need to get through that period and I'm sure that
we are gong to be in a position to challenge. I don't know when, but
hopefully sooner than later.
Q. Is this the worst situation you have been in your career?
KR: I've have had difficult seasons before and bad starts of
the season before. It's a hard time for everybody, but this is racing.
We try to improve and we try to do the best. It's not what we want, so
people are not so happy sometimes and we get lots of bad publicity from
the papers, but it doesn't stop us from trying and improving things.
Like I said, it will improve at some point. We will get back there, but
unfortunately we are not where we should be now.
Q. Where do you believe the problem lies?
KR: We probably don't have the same downforce as the others.
When we get the new floor for sure we are going to get lots of
downforce and it will make the car fast. In the dry the handling of the
car is not too bad, but we are missing downforce through the corners.
For sure it will make a massive difference.
Kimi said on the team radio at the first phase of the race that "the engine is not running well?" I couldn't make it out properly but I assume there was as Massa retired with a reliability problem.
Kimi had a bad grip problem which occured after his pit stop so that explains his decreased pace. Really, what could he do? He's driven amazing races in his career and he's still the same man. But the car is part of the game and you can't do much when you're racing a car that isn't where it should be. Great race by Red Bull! Awesome drive by Vettel, he's amazing. Webber missed out on his first victory again but I'm sure he's very happy nonetheless. Finally, Brawn GP have been beaten. Didn't take very long did it!? So there's no reason Ferrari and Kimi can't fight back. They've said they will but it wasn't going to happen straight away this weekend.
Anyway, I'm sorry for the result but there's not much Ferrari or Kimi
could've done. Kimi was doing the best he could, he kept it up
throughout the whole race, but could no longer do anything after his
final pit stop. He probably also had something look after, if there was
Yesterday in the blog, my comment for the race was this:
"All I hope for the race is that Ferrari are able
to maintain Kimi's position, wherever he may be during the race. Take
it easy, there's no rush on track as far as the F60 is concerned. As
previously mentioned, the car has a long way to go and the development
can't be hasty, and the focus needs to be on just getting it to the
finish line in the best position possible."
So, that's pretty much what happened today. Of
course, it hurts to see Kimi have to struggle with a disappointing car...again.
But he's strong and is determined to improve it with the team as he keeps saying. That will take time. Alonso and Kubica have also said similar things about improvement. I'm kinda
annoyed thatKimi finished lower than he started though - That proves his
qualy lap was very good indeed. I hope all the fans enjoyed the race for what it produced after the dreaded safety car start, that was very boring. The race was interesting but I'm a bit fed up of the rain now.
Everyone's after Kimi's head. Either he can't drive, he can't talk properly, he can't do anything right or everything all together. Well, if he scored points today what would that even mean? Not much to me. Kimi doesn't need to prove anything, to anyone, to impress me. He'll always be the best and I'll never give up on him. Never. That's why I say Keep Flying Kimi.
I've been here before many times, defending Kimi and trying to help make the doubters and haters see and understand
how unfair they're being towards him. But they don't care, they'll never understand.
It makes me very sad that the team Kimi drives for and respects so
much, has so many fans that cannot respect him. Sure, the Tifosi are hardcore
and cannot accept losing but to blame and insult Kimi so much is just
baffling and simply disgusting. Kimi is Ferrari's world champion.
They're still in Schumi-gaga land too. And you know what I say to that?
They can take their Ferrari, and shove it up their asses. If they don't
learn to start respecting and stop waffling and wrongfully accusing
Kimi of things he doesn't even say or do, then these people here don't
deserve our reasoning. They create too much negativity and aren't worth the time.
So take care, ignore them all and keep the faith. Kimi will be back ~
Full qualifying report can be read here
Pos Driver Team Q1 Q2 Q3 LapsBreaking News & Quotes:
1. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:36.565 1:35.130 1:36.184 11
2. Alonso Renault (B) 1:36.443 1:35.803 1:36.381 21
3. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:35.751 1:35.173 1:36.466 19
4. Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:35.701 1:35.503 1:36.493 21
5. Button Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:35.533 1:35.556 1:36.532 19
6. Trulli Toyota (B) 1:36.308 1:35.645 1:36.835 21
7. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) 1:35.941 1:35.809 1:37.397 23
8. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) 1:36.137 1:35.856 1:38.089 19
9. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:35.776 1:35.740 1:38.595 17
10. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:36.284 1:35.965 1:39.321 21
11. Heidfeld BMW-Sauber (B) 1:36.525 1:35.975 14
12. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:36.646 1:36.032 10
13. Massa Ferrari (B) 1:36.178 1:36.033 11
14. Glock Toyota (B) 1:36.364 1:36.066 14
15. Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) 1:36.673 1:36.193 13
16. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:36.906 10
17. Piquet Renault (B) 1:36.908 10
18. Kubica BMW-Sauber (B) 1:36.966 8
19. Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:37.669 10
20. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:37.672 10
Renault fits interim diffuser for Alonso
More teams ditch KERS for China
Bridgestone confident super softs do well
Post-qualifying car weights – China – Kimi: 673.5kg
Post-qualifying press conference
Ferrari Team Quotes: Kimi Raikkonen – 8th: "Of course I’m not happy with
eighth place but, given our current potential, we have to settle for
this. We got everything out of the car but we had no more new tyres for
Q3 and therefore, it’s already something to have put quite a few of our
competitors behind us. The problem is still the same, we are just not
quick enough. The car’s handling isn’t bad, but as I’ve said before, we
are giving away a second to the best.
"I hope we get some developments quickly but, in the meantime, we
try to do the best with what we’ve got. I hope we have a good race and
pick up a few points. I don’t know where we might have been if we had
the KERS: at some points it gives you an advantage, but in others it
can be a disadvantage. It would have been useful to run it on at least
one car to understand the situation better."
Chris Dyer: "After the disappointment of Malaysia,
this qualifying had some light and shade. Kimi secured a good position,
managing to make it through to the top ten, while unfortunately, Felipe
was out of the final part of the session because of a mistake that
prevented him from improving on his second run in Q2, just missing out
by less than a tenth. In Q3, on worn tyres, Kimi did a great job,
managing to put two cars behind him. We have a good strategy and hope
to pick up a few points in tomorrow’s race."
Kimi did a great job today! I’m really pleased (although it’s sad to hear Kimi having to deal with a situation like this again). He has been getting that Ferrari the furthest it can go, no doubt about that. He out-qualified Massa consistantly throughout the session and it’s clear – Kimi is much comfortable with this car compared to last year. It’s not where he wants to be obviously, but it’s good enough to allow him to do his job properly, and that means beating his teammate. It’s 2-1 to Kimi then (outqualifying Massa also at Malaysia). Around P5/6 is what we can reach in qualifying, however with the great performances of the other cars and drivers a few places are lost of course. Vettel, Alonso and Webber – a refreshing outlook for the race, without the Brawns. I’m sure Brawn GP will stamp their authority during the race though. But Red Bull are their closest rival and what a great thing that is for young Vettel but they had to go aggressive to get pole here.
Alonso’s diffuser, technically just a day old since his team fitted it last night, is showing obvious amendment to their pace. Ferrari I assume are sacrificing this weekend at China and probably Bahrain, while they focus entirely on ‘fixing’ the car back home in Italy and bring it all when we reach the European races. This is the logical thing to do I guess. Meanwhile, Kimi’s doing a brilliant job I think because he’s pushing the car at it’s maximum. Just like how he used to at McLaren. He’s showing the borderline to the team and from that he can give feedback to whats missing, how the car feels and etc. What more do they (the Tifosi) want? They need to look further than the ice cream and poker face before making unfounded assumptions on Kimi and his motive.
The tyres will be crucial to how the race plays out. The super softs weren’t exactly compatible so far this weekend, but throughout qualifying as the track became cleaner and warmer and therefore with more grip, they’ve performed ‘okay’. So, that’s good.
All I hope for the race is that Ferrari are able to maintain Kimi’s position, wherever he may be during the race. Take it easy, there’s no rush on track as far as the F60 is concerned. As previously mentioned, the car has a long way to go and the development can’t be hasty, and the focus needs to be on just getting it to the finish line in the best position possible. Running without the KERS, Kimi has done considerably well, so well done Kimi! The fans who are out in force, in Shanghai, supporting Kimi are also doing a fantastic job. Keep Flying! ~
…Prior to Rosberg’s return, Kimi Raikkonen had been quickest for
Ferrari, although the former champion spun at Turn 3 immediately after
setting his benchmark time.
Nine minutes after losing the top spot to Rosberg, Raikkonen
reclaimed it by 0.047s, although within moments the Ferrari had been
beaten by Trulli’s Toyota, as the Italian became the first to set a
time on super soft tyres and moved 0.6s clear of the field…
Pos Driver Team Time Laps
1. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) 1:36.133 17
2. Trulli Toyota (B) 1:36.272 + 0.139 22
3. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:36.330 + 0.197 17
4. Button Brawn GP-Mercedes (B) 1:36.463 + 0.330 16
5. Piquet Renault (B) 1:36.464 + 0.331 16
6. Massa Ferrari (B) 1:36.528 + 0.395 18
7. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:36.547 + 0.414 13
8. Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) 1:36.560 + 0.427 17
9. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) 1:36.568 + 0.435 17
10. Barrichello Brawn GP-Mercedes (B) 1:36.642 + 0.509 17
11. Heidfeld BMW Sauber (B) 1:36.702 + 0.569 14
12. Kubica BMW Sauber (B) 1:36.742 + 0.609 14
13. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:36.742 + 0.609 16
14. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:36.834 + 0.701 17
15. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:37.330 + 1.197 8
16. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:37.349 + 1.216 7
17. Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:37.534 + 1.401 17
18. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:37.732 + 1.599 18
19. Alonso Renault (B) 1:38.003 + 1.870 6
20. Glock Toyota (B) 1:39.110 + 2.977 6
Free Practice 2 – Button Fastest
Full practice report can be read here
Pos Driver Team Time Laps
1. Button Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:35.679 35
2. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) 1:35.704 + 0.025 36
3. Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:35.881 + 0.202 35
4. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:36.105 + 0.426 32
5. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:36.167 + 0.488 22
6. Trulli Toyota (B) 1:36.217 + 0.538 42
7. Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) 1:36.377 + 0.698 32
8. Glock Toyota (B) 1:36.548 + 0.869 40
9. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:36.674 + 0.995 34
10. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:36.800 + 1.121 34
11. Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:36.829 + 1.150 30
12. Massa Ferrari (B) 1:36.847 + 1.168 34
13. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:36.941 + 1.262 28
14. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) 1:37.054 + 1.375 33
15. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:37.219 + 1.540 34
16. Piquet Renault (B) 1:37.273 + 1.594 36
17. Kubica BMW-Sauber (B) 1:37.491 + 1.812 34
18. Heidfeld BMW-Sauber (B) 1:37.544 + 1.865 28
19. Alonso Renault (B) 1:37.638 + 1.959 28
20. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:37.750 + 2.071 31
Ferrari Team Quotes: Kimi Raikkonen – 14th: The balance of the car isn’t
bad and one doesn’t feel the lack of KERS. The point is that we are too
slow compared to the teams currently at the top of the order. We must
try and improve the car: at the moment, we are not able to fight for
the title. We must not give up the fight because, with the whole team
working hard, we can get back into a winning position. It’s not an easy
time, but our group is strong and we know what needs to be done to get
out of this situation. The softer tyre seems to work better than it did
Pos Driver Team Time Laps
1. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:37.334 + 22
2. Button Brawn GP-Mercedes (B) 1:37.450 + 0.116 18
3. Barrichello Brawn GP-Mercedes (B) 1:37.566 + 0.232 19
4. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:37.672 + 0.338 23
5. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:37.752 + 0.418 20
6. Trulli Toyota (B) 1:37.764 + 0.430 19
7. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) 1:37.860 + 0.526 24
8. Glock Toyota (B) 1:37.894 + 0.560 21
9. Alonso Renault (B) 1:38.089 + 0.755 19
10. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:38.195 + 0.861 24
11. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) 1:38.223 + 0.889 23
12. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:38.274 + 0.940 20
13. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:38.307 + 0.973 26
14. Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:38.319 + 0.985 18
15. Massa Ferrari (B) 1:38.418 + 1.084 20
16. Heidfeld BMW Sauber (B) 1:38.456 + 1.122 21
17. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:38.460 + 1.126 19
18. Kubica BMW Sauber (B) 1:38.463 + 1.129 18
19. Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) 1:38.730 + 1.396 25
20. Piquet Renault (B) 1:38.825 + 1.491 20
Gunpowder from China
This is the first time we race in China in the beginning of the season
when it’s springtime. To me the new time doesn’t mean a thing. I always
go to races in the same way. The goal is every time to score good
points and do my best so that I would win the race.
China has been a good place for me before. Ever since the Shanghai
circuit was new we have always found the setups so that we have been
able to fight for the trophies. Two years ago I won the race and I’ve
always got a good result from there. Now I have to hope that Shanghai
finally would give the cannon start to our fight for the championship.
After all they invented the gunpowder over in China!
Like the gang knows the situation regarding the championship is
still pending. Our team and me myself have had a really bad start. But
still we know that we would have earned reasonable points with our
competitivness if we would have had a a little more luck. Of course
it’s unneccessary to grieve. In motorsport you have one moment – and
that’s when you have to make it. If you don’t make it it’s no use to
start thinking ‘what if’ afterwards because it won’t change a thing.
But luckily for us this is once again a long serie. And it isn’t
over yet. We’ve only raced two races and we have 15 more to go to. Of
course it’s important that we start scoring points with a pace now so
that we can catch up with the top and won’t stay behind anymore.
The team has worked hard after Australia and Malaysia so that the chase can begin from China.
It’s a bit more tricky now when we can’t test the car on the track.
The new regulations makes it more difficult for those who have to chase
the top from the beginning of the season. Now the GP-weekend’s Friday
is an even more important opportunity to test when you have to test all
new parts along with the rubbers.
I’m now 15 points behind the lead. Our car has lacked traction and
speed. To China we get some new parts and let’s hope that they work
immediately so that we are faster. This week is exciting in other ways
too when FIA will give the decision about the diffusors. While I’m
writing this I’m still waiting for the verdict.
It’s a fact that other teams will bring new parts to China also.
That’s why it’s difficult to say how big the differences are when
compared to the top. But I’m hopeful and wish that we are closer to the
top than we have been during the first two weekends.
After Malaysia I flew to Switzerland, then I did a gig in Italy and
during the Easter I went to Finland to say hi to the folks and my
friends. We had time to play some icehockey and now I get to go totally
fresh to the race. I’ll try to win or at least get to the podium.
Nothing else matters.
That Ferrari could do with some gun powder, yeah Kimi! Great column, many thanks to Wolfie who translates these for us. Otherwise we’d have to make do with the PR drivel the official English columns provide! To fill in the gaps for Kimi, the FIA deemed the diffusers legal today and Ferrari, as well as the other teams of course, will be forced to come up with their own diffuser development. This weekend, Ferrari will bring significant changes to their chassis, apparently tested out by Marc Gene last week, and it’ll also be their first weekend after the changes made to their trackside operations too – as mentioned in their team preview.
It’s going to be a big weekend, me thinks! Hopefully ending with Kimi smiling with a trophy in his hand instead of an ice cream. Keep Flying! ~
NoteNow is everything working alright on KRS? I also mean the Photo Archive (viewing and downloading) and also the videos in Skydrive?
I ask because if you’ve been having trouble browsing and downloading things around this site (particularly Mozilla Firefox users), visit the forum for further information and advice on how to resolve the issue in your browser. Thank you for your patience during these past couple of weeks!
The Grand Prix Drivers’ Association (GPDA) has succeeded in boosting
its membership numbers by convincing previous high-profile sceptics,
including Felipe Massa and Adrian Sutil, to join the organisation,
AUTOSPORT can reveal.
With the GPDA having endured a difficult 2008, with world
championship frontrunners Lewis Hamilton, Massa and Kimi Raikkonen not
members, its chairman Pedro de la Rosa together with directors Fernando
Alonso and Mark Webber worked hard throughout last winter to get the
doubters back on board.
With big progress being made on the eve of the season as Hamilton
signed up to the GPDA for the first time since he entered F1 in 2007,
AUTOSPORT has learned that Massa and Sutil also agreed to become
members at the same time.
With a host of reserve drivers and F1 rookie Sebastien Buemi also
joining up, it means that Kimi Raikkonen is now the only regular driver
who has not yet agreed to become a member.
De la Rosa said he was delighted that the likes of Hamilton and
Massa were now on board – which comes after a winter when the GPDA
helped agree with the FIA a reduction in super licence fees for all
"It is important we are all there," de la Rosa told AUTOSPORT. "It
is great news that Lewis, Felipe and Adrian have come on board, but
also that test drivers like Christian Klien are there too, and new
drivers like Buemi. It’s quite reassuring.
"I admit we were weak last year, especially when Felipe left. But he
has come back, and I’m glad he has. I’m really delighted about Lewis
being there too."
De la Rosa said he hoped Raikkonen, who is still considering
becoming a member, would also sign up to ensure that every driver on
the grid is in the GPDA.
"We wish Kimi was there, as he is one of the top guys, so hopefully he will agree soon too," said the Spaniard.
"The GPDA is an important organisation. Although the drivers fight
each other on the track, we must be able to work together off it to
solve problems. I believe the GPDA today is stronger than ever."
I had fun making that wanted poster of Kimi. Now that he is the sole non-GPDA F1 driver, the whole gang will be on his back trying to get him to join. But Kimi being Kimi, he’ll only join the GPDA if he felt he should or believed in the reasons for joining. He wouldn’t just jump on the bandwagon. He will probably be asked about this later this week when the F1 circus heads to China for the third Grand Prix of the season.
Also, Ferrari announced today that there has been restructuring of their trackside operations, with Luca Baldisserri being moved to a factory-based role. The good news for us Kimi fans is that Chris Dyer, Kimi’s ex-race engineer from 2007 and 2008, will be replacing Baldisserri on the pit wall:
Following crisis talks at Maranello last week to discuss why the
outfit has failed to score a point in the first two races of the year,
its worst start to a campaign since 1992, the team has ramped up
efforts to ensure it changes the situation as soon as possible.
As part of that bid to help improve the performance, the team has
decided to set up a new Working Party to fast-track car improvements
that are essential if Kimi Raikkonen and Felipe Massa are to start
delivering the results needed to keep them in the title hunt.
This department will be headed by technical director Aldo Costa,
with Baldisserri now handed responsibility for coordinating the factory
efforts with trackside operations. Work will focus on all areas of car
performance, including a double-decker diffuser if the concept is given
the green light by the FIA International Court of Appeal this week.
The staff changes mean that Baldisserri will no longer attend races,
with his role at the races now being taken by chief track engineer
The decision to move Baldisserri away from his trackside role comes
after team principal Stefano Domenicali labelled the team’s performance
in Malaysia, where errors in qualifying and the race cost it dearly, as
"Well, of course it is not a positive weekend," Domenicali told
reporters after seeing Massa knocked out early in qualifying and
Raikkonen’s race wrecked by a wrong switch to wet tyres on a dry track.
"It is the second one in a row and it is not good, for sure. Anyway,
what we have to do is react immediately.
"The people have to take their own responsibility for things, and
this is important in the moment where either from the performance point
of view, and the management point of view, things are not going well.
This is for sure not acceptable, and I am not accepting that."
As well as the team restructure, Ferrari will bring a host of new
parts to this weekend’s Chinese Grand Prix – including a revised front
wing – which were evaluated by Marc Gene in straight-line testing last
Ferrari has also confirmed that design consultant Rory Byrne and
chief designer Nikolas Tombazis will represent the team at the FIA
International Court of Appeal hearing into the diffusers, which takes
I’ve just bought it today and haven’t read it myself yet! I got too excited and scanned it in straight away. I’ve included Felipe Massa’s interview in the scans’ download link, and I’ve also edited out the Kimi pictures for you girls in a separate folder. These will be uploaded into the photo albums online too! Enjoy the read, as from the little bits I’ve seen it really is a good one from Kimi. Perhaps one of the best interview responses I’ve read (I say response because it’s Kimi answers that make it so good, not necessarily just the questions). The characteristically named sections are Individual, Genius, Aloof, Nonchalant, Determined and Happy – Kimi gives his take on his life and career under each of these titles. So if you’re a new fan or just passer by, you must read this. Kimi’s way of life and understanding of the world is just mind blowing. Kimi is the best! I couldn’t resist making this:
This is another cool interview with Kimi, from Australian One TV during the Grand Prix weekend at Melbourne. In this five minute short interview, when asked about the ideas of him lacking motivation in 2008 Kimi clearly defends himself and funnily brushes it off: "…it’s not like I suddenly lost my motivation but…people always talk a lot of shit, so it’s not a big surprise."
Video & Download Courtesy of Ladora!
Finnish Translation Courtesy of Wolfie
For me this year has started just like the game
Africa’s star back in the old days. I have done two trips already and
on both occasions I turned up the bandit chip. The season couldn’t have
started more worse than this.
Now I have to find really fast the
ruby or at least the horse shoe chip so that I would have a chance to
grab Africa’s star when the season ends.
I mean this was a surprise to all of us. We miss a lot of pace. Nobody could have expected things to turn out this way.
whole team is on zero points after two races. Now we have gone back to
the square from where we started from and concentrate on getting the
car better and quickly. The fact is that in both Melbourne and Malaysia
we didn’t have the fastest car and with that car we cannot fight for
the victory. But it’s good enough so that we can get good results if we
just wouldn’t make mistakes.
Now we have made way too many wrong
choices and screwed up. If we would have got it right we would have got
good points from both races.
In Melbourne we had a good pace in
practice. Of course you never know what the others are plotting but at
least if felt that it would go better in Malaysia.
I got a decent laptime in quali. Uptil then everything worked so well that some good points would have been expected.
the race nothing went according to our plans. I was able to go up in
the start but then I got stuck behind Alonso. He also used the KERS in
the start and he had a heavy car but was in front of me. But there’s
nothing you can do about that. Screw ups happen and we have had too many
It’s exciting with KERS. In practice the whole cockpit
was filled with smoke when the batteries heated up. Then my race would
have ended because with the heavy rain there was too much risk. At that
point the game was already lost anyway.
Now we have to wait what
FIA decides about the appeals. It’s an important decision but no matter
what they decide we have to get our car faster and traction better and
I can’t promise anything about China. I will try to win but it’s ok if I would even get to the podium.
A totally different column, indeed. The
‘official’ columns may not sound like Kimi but that’s because these
official releases are undoubtedly re-worked by Ferrari’s press, as they
publish the same thing on their new website
first, and then Kimi’s website. But his original Finnish versions are
usually quite different and more like the Iceman, and they are released
later. And you will notice that the tone is very different. So don’t
let the official releases deceive you.
for the official inauguration of the Ferrari Store. I’ll definately be
there to get close for an autograph and a picture! It’s fantastic that
Kimi will be here in London, finally. I’ve been waiting for years.
Fingers crossed for that.
Hi! I’ve calmed down from the disappointment that ruined my mood yesterday when I said I wouldn’t make this video. But then I thought I’ll make it slightly different – so these are highlights specifically of Kimi’s weekend, no one elses. A lot more footage of Kimi is in this video compared to the others, ironically. You won’t see any free practice, qualifying or race action unless it’s about Kimi. I’m glad I made this choice because the usual full and complete video would have been far longer than what I’ve actually managed (which is six minutes), as the race was full of chaos towards the end and I would’ve caused an accident. While many of you haven’t been able to download any pictures or videos on this site due to a Windows Live issue, almost everything is captured in this video anyway. I know yesterday I said it’s hard being a Kimi fan, when he has had so much in his way and continues to, but it’s also a privilege to be his supporter! The man is a living legend! While things make it seem otherwise (the media in particular), Kimi remains himself. He drove a great race, despite the ending. And he kept smiling! And so did a lot of you. I’d like to dedicate this video to all you fans then. Kimi’s team radio and ice(man) cream scene are included – two very special moments showing contrasting moods of Kimi. Enjoy the video!
Sunday Race Day – No Points For Ferrari
Full race report can be read here
Pos Driver Team Time
1. Button Brawn GP (B) 1h10:59.092
2. Heidfeld BMW Sauber (B) + 22.722
3. Glock Toyota (B) + 23.513
4. Trulli Toyota (B) + 46.173
5. Barrichello Brawn GP (B) + 47.360
6. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) + 52.333
7. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) + 60.733
8. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) + 71.576
9. Massa Ferrari (B) + 76.932
10. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) + 102.164
11. Alonso Renault (B) + 1 lap
12. Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) + 1 lap
13. Piquet Renault (B) + 1 lap
14. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) + 1 lap
15. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) + 1 lap
16. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) + 1 lap
17. Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) + 1 lap
18. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) + 2 lap
Fastest lap: Button, 1:36.641
Driver Team On lap
Kubica BMW Sauber (B) 1
Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) 0Breaking News & Quotes:
Malaysian GP red-flagged due to rain
Ferrari team quotes - Kimi Raikkonen - 14th: "We were in a good position at
the time of the first pitstop and then we made a mistake, fitting the
rain tyres when the rain had yet to fall. And that was where my race
was pretty much over. When the race was halted, the conditions were
very difficult. There was so much water on the track and I was
struggling to drive the car even in second gear. Clearly we cannot be
happy with our start to the season: in Melbourne, I was the one to make
a mistake and today it was the team, the result being we find ourselves
without any points."
Rain and F1 equalled chaos, as usual! The race started fantastically, plenty of action and battling going on. The group that Alonso was holding up was particularly interesting to watch, as Kimi chased him down and passed eventually. It was all good, it was looking good indeed. But of course, Ferrari had to go and stuff it up with bad strategic planning yet again. They stuffed up yesterday in qualifying with Massa, and then it was Kimi's turn in the race. He was running in fifth place, not bad at all. Obviously, not anywhere near the front but for now Ferrari can do with some points. Yet they can't even score a single one.
I regret hoping for rain. I admit it brings a damn exciting and fun race to watch but it ruined Kimi's race yet again in the Ferrari. I was praying they didn't mess the race up as Kimi rolled into the pits - earlier than planned, which was for lap 21 I'm sure it was. In anticipation for the rain to fall, they put the tyres on too soon. Kimi fell back towards the end and he then mumbled over the team radio something I couldn't understand, apparently said "my tyres are completely destroyed" - good one for pointing that out to the team Kimi. But I know this much - he was annoyed. And so am I. I usually keep my cool about things and come here and sound all positive and light-hearted, but today really has pissed me right off.
The BBC didn't help. The race coverage was poor. Not once did anyone mention what happened to Kimi, after his pitstop we never saw him ever again. I was wondering where the hell Kimi was. Then his team radio came on and that's it. While the race was stopped (I can't even be bothered to talk about the race while it was dry, because it was really good) and the cars lined up on the grid, everyone soaking wet, Kimi's car was being rolled back into the pit garage. I assumed, race over. Then having to wait a futher half and hour before the BBC even picked up on that fact, they still couldn't find out for us what happened. Utterly useless coverage. Sure, Kimi was not a prominent figure being back in 14th, but for heavens sake, he was 5th and a good race went out the window. The least the BBC could have done was mention it, but they were too busy waffling on and on and on about safety. Oh, safety this, Oh, safety that. Flipping heck, the drivers are 100% aware about the safety, they're not stupid. Talk about something relevant i.e what the teams have been struggling with, more precisely, what the hell happened to Ferrari.
Then to wind me up even more, the BBC with presenter Jake Humphreys, David Coulthard and Eddie Jordan decided to find Kimi in the garage out of his race overalls, in his flip flops, eating ice cream more interesting than the situation itself. They were joking about it's not the right weather for ice cream, oh he looks ready to be off to the beach and more rubbish. Obviously if the car's got a damn problem, why would Kimi be sat sweating in a helmet? Oh but the BBC weren't even bothered about what was Kimi's situation with the car in the garage with the wheels off, they were more amused by his ice cream. Idiots. It was good to see Kimi as himself though.
Finally, pit report Ted Kravitz spoke to Ferrari's Luca Colajanni about what's wrong with Kimi's car and he said there seemed to be a problem with the KERS. And they were deciding what to do, whether to restart from the pitlane (if there was a race restart) or retire Kimi. Completely ignoring the fact that they screwed up his race in 5th place, we were left with nothing else.
So I'm very annoyed after today's race. And I wasn't even expecting Kimi to win. Is scoring some points too damn hard for Ferrari nowadays? It's really hard being a Kimi fan, I feel extremely frustrated with how things have been going for him. He was doing a good job, he was great no doubt about that, he always does his best but the whole thing can't stick together as well as it should, it seems. Last weekend we had people criticising Kimi. Yet, the dunces on Ferrari's pit wall can't do anything right either themselves. I know, it's a team effort. But the strategists at Ferrari were clearly to blame for this poor result for Kimi. We weren't asking for a win, just some points. What's so bloody hard in doing that. I feel sorry for Kimi. I'm already feeling guilty for ranting and being 'negative' but I'm entitled to my opinion.
*Takes a deep breath* Okay, now that I've got that off my chest, let's take a step back. Brawn GP and Toyota are in a class of their own. The diffuser row will go to China which is where the next race is. While the teams protest against these diffusers, the FIA clearly think otherwise, so Ferrari will be working on the diffuser since Australia and come up with a fight back when we get to Europe. This is all we can do. Wait. Wait and see.
I won't be making a highlight video for this race. It's utterly pointless. Nor do I feel like it, because these videos are based on Kimi's weekend and when there's hardly anything to do with Kimi, what's there to show? Till we start getting some results, I'm not wasting my time. I have other things on my mind, like I said it's not that easy being a Kimi fan. I'm sorry about this. I'll go away now and eat some ice cream in support of Kimi, that's the least I can do. If he can be so relaxed about it all, then I have to try that too because my blood was boiling in the past two hours. I'm always supporting him in my heart and that's all that counts right now. I love Kimi, I love you guys who visit here and I'm sure things will get better but right now, I'm just fed up. We'll be back soon though! Keep Flying Kimi ~
Note Please do not keep sending me messages about why you can't download the pictures of videos because I've said a hundred times - WINDOWS LIVE SPACES is NOT working properly and since I have no control over Windows Live I can therefore do nothing about it. Sorry!
Full qualifying report can be read here
Pos Driver Team Q1 Q2 Q3Breaking News & Quotes:
1. Button Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:35.058 1:33.784 1:35.181
2. Trulli Toyota (B) 1:34.745 1:33.990 1:35.273
3. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:34.935 1:34.276 1:35.518
4. Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:34.681 1:34.387 1:35.651
5. Glock Toyota (B) 1:34.907 1:34.258 1:35.690
6. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) 1:35.083 1:34.547 1:35.750
7. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:35.027 1:34.222 1:35.797
8. Kubica BMW-Sauber (B) 1:35.166 1:34.562 1:36.106
9. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) 1:35.476 1:34.456 1:36.170
10. Alonso Renault (B) 1:35.260 1:34.706 1:37.659
11. Heidfeld BMW-Sauber (B) 1:35.110 1:34.769
12. Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) 1:35.341 1:34.788
13. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:35.280 1:34.905
14. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:35.023 1:34.924
15. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:35.507 1:35.431
16. Massa Ferrari (B) 1:35.642
17. Piquet Renault (B) 1:35.708
18. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:35.908
19. Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:35.951
20. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:36.107
Post-qualifying car weights – Kimi: 662.5kg
Most teams change engines for Malaysia
Domenicali: 2008 title fight cost us
Ferrari Team Quotes - Kimi Raikkonen – 9th: "Honestly, the main problem
is that, at the moment, we are not quick enough to fight for the top
places. The car is not lacking in any particular area, but we do not
have enough grip to be as quick as those who finished ahead of us
today. Tomorrow’s race will be very tough. We will try to make the most
of the start.
"In Australia, it was very good but there was nowhere to go, whereas
here, the straight is long and the track is wide. Furthermore, as we
saw yesterday, our pace is competitive. We have to improve our
performance but obviously, it is important to have the regulations
clarified as quickly as possible, to understand in which direction to
go. Both types of tyres work well over a distance and we will try and
Congratulations to Button, but Trulli made it hard for him! Vettel did another amazing job today – such a shame that it’s taken away with his grid penalty for his accident in Australia. No surprise at all that Brawn and Toyota are as quick as they were in Australia though. I do not understand BMW however! Well, it’s not a very nice qualifying day for Ferrari – Massa down in 16th apparently due to over-confidence. A very bad call there. It was not much better for Kimi either but I really feel it was the best he could do as the Ferrari is just not able to match those front runners yet, added with the probability that Kimi is carrying a bit more fuel than the others. Kimi had some moments throughout qualifying, braking hard and going off track, little twitches here and there, obviously to do with getting the maximum out of the soft tyres in the extremely humid Malaysian circuit. So the race should be better than Australia was. Kimi starts 7th on the grid, not 9th as Vettel and Barrichello penalty drop. That means Kimi will be on the clean and most grippiest side of the grid and Kimi’s KERS should have a good advantage over the others. Looking forward to the race – Malaysia holds a very special place in my heart as a Kimi fan. Keep flying Kimi ~
Note As previously mentioned many times, Windows Live Spaces is having some problems and Skydrive is also affected. I am aware the photos and videos are not viewable. It is extremely frustrating I know and I am very sorry but there’s nothing I can do. Sometimes it will start working itself, so keep checking for the videos and photos!
Free Practice 3 – Rosberg Fastest In Final Practice
Full practice report can be read here
Pos Driver Car Time Laps
1. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) 1:35.940 19
2. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:36.048 + 0.108 13
3. Massa Ferrari (B) 1:36.089 + 0.149 13
4. Trulli Toyota (B) 1:36.132 + 0.192 21
5. Glock Toyota (B) 1:36.189 + 0.249 22
6. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:36.194 + 0.254 14
7. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) 1:36.322 + 0.382 14
8. Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) 1:36.325 + 0.385 18
9. Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:36.519 + 0.579 19
10. Button Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:36.541 + 0.601 17
11. Kubica BMW-Sauber (B) 1:36.563 + 0.623 18
12. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:36.657 + 0.717 15
13. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:36.742 + 0.802 13
14. Alonso Renault (B) 1:37.004 + 1.064 16
15. Heidfeld BMW-Sauber (B) 1:37.026 + 1.086 18
16. Piquet Renault (B) 1:37.032 + 1.092 18
17. Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:37.118 + 1.178 18
18. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:37.282 + 1.342 17
19. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:37.322 + 1.382 16
20. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:37.398 + 1.458 19
Kimi Raikkonen led a Ferrari resurgence in the second free practice
session at Sepang ahead of this weekend’s Malaysian Grand Prix.
Having recovered from the smoky cockpit dramas of the morning,
the Finn eclipsed team-mate Felipe Massa, setting the fastest lap of
the weekend so far – 1:35.707.
It wasn’t a trouble-free session for the Finn though, as the
team came over the radio at the end of the session reporting a problem
with his Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS).
Pos Driver Team Time Laps
1. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) 1:35.707 40
2. Massa Ferrari (B) 1:35.832 + 0.125 38
3. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:35.954 + 0.247 40
4. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) 1:36.015 + 0.308 39
5. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:36.026 + 0.319 36
6. Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:36.161 + 0.454 37
7. Button Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:36.254 + 0.547 31
8. Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) 1:36.290 + 0.583 35
9. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:36.397 + 0.690 40
10. Piquet Renault (B) 1:36.401 + 0.694 35
11. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:36.515 + 0.808 30
12. Trulli Toyota (B) 1:36.516 + 0.809 34
13. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:36.628 + 0.921 32
14. Glock Toyota (B) 1:36.639 + 0.932 29
15. Alonso Renault (B) 1:36.640 + 0.933 20
16. Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:36.875 + 1.168 36
17. Kubica BMW-Sauber (B) 1:37.267 + 1.560 38
18. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:37.278 + 1.571 30
19. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:37.432 + 1.725 27
20. Heidfeld BMW-Sauber (B) 1:37.930 + 2.223 37
Breaking News & Quotes – Updated:
Hamilton apologises for ‘huge mistake’
McLaren Suspend Dave Ryans
BMW join diffuser appeal
Alonso struggling with fitness
Bridgstone Friday Quotes
No smoke anymore (Ferrari): The first free practice session for the
Malaysian GP ended with lots of smoke for the Scuderia Ferrari
Marlboro, when Kimi Raikkonen had to come back to the box, because
dense white smoke came out of his cockpit. The car stopped just a few
metres in front of the garage and was brought to the box by the
mechanics, where they started to find the cause. Everything the Team
does is done respecting the emergency rules, which means that the
engineerrs are wearing special protective overalls and gloves. After a
first exam of the car it seems that the problem was caused by a short
circuit in the KERS. A new KERS will fitted immediately. Kimi’s session didn’t go very well. The Finnish driver had to almost
immediately change his first set of tyres – the first of three
available today – because of a cut on a rear wheel.
Ferrari Team Quotes – Kimi Raikkonen – 1st: "This morning we had a
problem with the KERS, which cost us a bit of time, but we managed to
make up for most of it in the afternoon. We had felt that the situation
here could be different to Melbourne, but it is still too early to say
where we are up against the opposition.
"What we can be sure of is that when the car runs trouble-free, we
are competitive. We hope we can do a good job in tomorrow’s qualifying."
Good start to the weekend so far. I’m not sure what happened with Kimi this morning though, problems with the KERS and a smokey garage? From what the picture shows, I guess it was just the KERS system. I knew I should have woken up to watch practice and see what’s going on! Anyway, second practice shows some promising pace for Ferrari, but let’s see if they can keep it up with reliability for tomorrow. Keep Flying! ~
Pos Driver Team Time Laps
1. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) 1:36.260 27
2. Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) 1:36.305 + 0.045 25
3. Button Brawn GP-Mercedes (B) 1:36.430 + 0.170 20
4. Barrichello Brawn GP-Mercedes (B) 1:36.487 + 0.227 22
5. Massa Ferrari (B) 1:36.561 + 0.301 21
6. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) 1:36.646 + 0.386 18
7. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:36.699 + 0.439 16
8. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:36.703 + 0.443 23
9. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:36.747 + 0.487 25
10. Glock Toyota (B) 1:36.980 + 0.720 27
11. Trulli Toyota (B) 1:36.982 + 0.722 26
12. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:37.025 + 0.765 20
13. Kubica BMW Sauber (B) 1:37.039 + 0.779 18
14. Piquet Renault (B) 1:37.199 + 0.939 20
15. Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:37.241 + 0.981 18
16. Alonso Renault (B) 1:37.395 + 1.135 12
17. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:37.634 + 1.374 22
18. Heidfeld BMW Sauber (B) 1:37.640 + 1.380 17
19. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:38.022 + 1.762 19
20. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:38.483 + 2.223 7
DRIVERS: Sebastien BOURDAIS (Toro Rosso), Jenson BUTTON (Brawn
GP), Lewis HAMILTON (McLaren Mercedes), Kimi RAIKKONEN (Ferrari), Nico
ROSBERG (Williams), Sebastian VETTEL (Red Bull).
Q. Kimi, can I ask you about your experiences with KERS last weekend? Was it of use to you and how much did you use it?
Kimi RAIKKONEN: I used it all the time if nothing is wrong
with it. For us it has been better in testing, it was good there, so I
don’t see any reason why we shouldn’t use it.
Q. And a two time winner here. This is obviously a good circuit for you?
KR: I like the circuit. Sometimes it can be a bit tricky. It
is a nice place, quite a bit different from others. It is very humid
here. When it rains, it rains heavily, so we will see how it is this
Q. Would you say you are more optimistic than you were in Australia?
KR: I mean the end result could have been pretty okay without
my accident. Probably the speed is not where we want to be right now
but this is a completely different place. It is more like a normal
circuit compared to Australia, so we will see how we can do here but I
still think that our car is not too bad, so we should be able to get
good results once we get everything going well.
Q. (Will Buxton – Australasian Motor Sport News) A question to
everyone on the subject of KERS. Do you see it more as an offensive or
defensive button at the moment? Are you using it more to overtake
people than stop people overtaking you? To the guys that don’t have
KERS, are you finding it is being used to overtake you or stop you
NR: I had an eventful race racing against a lot of people who
had KERS and I found it quite challenging for myself actually because
especially to overtake was difficult but then to defend was very
difficult against people that did have KERS just because they come at
you very quickly. That made it quite challenging but I guess that is
what the sport needs, so from that point of view it was quite good.
LH: I think it was perhaps better for defending. If
you have a bad exit of some sort and there is a quick car behind you,
for example, the Toyota couldn’t get close enough to out-brake me into
some of the corners. Obviously at the end of the slipstream it is right
at the end, into the corner, that you are overtaking someone and you
know you can get close enough to do that. It was an advantage in terms
KR: We use it for lap time. Of course it can help
you overtake or defending your position at some places but it really
depends what happens during the race where you are going to use it.
SV: I think mainly the people use it to get an
advantage on the lap time and then of course it can help you in the
races maybe sometimes to pass or defend. Mainly we are using it to gain
performance otherwise it would not make sense to run it.
Q. (Juha Päätalo – Financial Times Germany) This one is for Kimi
and Lewis: theoretically, the KERS should be an advantage at restarts
but in Melbourne it didn’t seem to help at all. Do you think that was
because of cool tyres and are you expecting a different picture at
KR: As I said, it depends on many different things, it’s not
just that you get 80 horsepower and you are going to get around
somebody or you can pass easily. It’s always if your car is good or
it’s not good and if you get a good run on him, or he gets the jump on
you at the restart. It’s just not pretty straightforward thinking. At
the start, it definitely helps but at a restart it’s not so easy.
LH: The tyres are just the issue, I think, getting heat back into the tyres is what stops everyone from overtaking.
Q. (Will Buxton – Australasian Motor Sport News) One for
everybody on tyres: how much is the wider gap affecting you guys in the
race, how much is it going to change strategy over the coming races?
JB: I think they’ve done it to make it more exciting between
the tyres choices and a few more different strategies. Obviously it
made a big difference with the safety cars in Melbourne because the
softer tyre was graining for most people, so it threw it up in the air
a little bit which was good. Here we have a soft tyre and a hard tyre.
The hard tyre we haven’t run yet in testing, so that’s going to be
interesting to see if we can get it to work here. I think it’s going to
take a couple of laps to get heat into it. It’s going to be difficult
to work out which is the better tyre and which is the tyre for the race
but that’s obviously what we’ll be doing tomorrow.
KR: For sure it makes the race much more exciting
when somebody has the harder and somebody the softer tyres, so it makes
the lap time difference much bigger between the cars, so you can see
some overtaking. It’s also a little bit tricky to get them working in
the way you want sometimes. For us the soft tyre didn’t last very long,
so we just came in and changed the tyres, it was a good move. Everybody
needs to suffer on the worse tyre at some point in the race. For us, we
decided to start with them.
SV: I think it has an effect on your strategy. You
could see everyone was struggling the whole weekend to make the soft
tyre last and therefore the majority of the people pitted very late for
the last stop and had a very, very short last stint. It’s always
tricky, in a way. We asked for a wider separation between soft and
hard. In Australia there was quite an extreme wide separation as the
hard ones were difficult to warm up and the soft ones were difficult to
keep alive. We will see how the tyres work here. I’m looking forward to
the hard compound, because I think it’s a totally new compound and no
one has had any experience on it yet, so we will see how it works here.
SB: Obviously it’s a bit of a tricky situation when
you have to pick your strategy and you don’t know when the safety car
is going to happen. That’s really what makes your strategy work or not.
If it’s a straightforward race and you know what’s going to happen then
you make your choice, knowing what’s going to happen. You can be wrong,
but there are less chances if it’s the other way round and safety cars
start messing up everything, then it’s a big problem. Personally, I
understand the reasons and obviously it makes racing very exciting.
Personally I’m not a big fan of it because I just think it takes a lot
of things away from the driver because you can’t control everything and
it’s a bit artificial, but definitely for the show it’s a good thing.
LH: There’s not really much more to say, they’ve
all said it. There’s quite a big difference between both compounds but
it makes racing more exciting.
NR: I think it’s a very good thing for the sport,
it makes it very challenging for the teams to get it right. It’s a big
challenge to sort out strategy, what you’re going to do, how you’re
going to do it, because there’s such a variable in it with these tyres.
And for the racing it’s great, as we saw in Melbourne. I was a special
victim of that, for example, just went backwards. I was just so slow on
the softs because they just went away completely, but I’m happy with
it, I think it’s good.
Q. (Andrea Cremonesi – La Gazzetta dello Sport) And I would just
like to know from all of you if only the weather can change the first
two steps on the podium for Sunday?
JB: I hope not. Apart from that, what can I say?
SB: I think if it rains like this we will need to organise a boat race.
KR: It can change anything or everything if it rains like it was raining just now. We will see what happens.
JB: If it’s raining like that it’s about keeping on
the circuit, and I’ve struggled with that in the past couple of years
in the wet.
SV: I think it can, yes, you’ve already seen in the
past – obviously I’m not that old, so I haven’t got that much
experience – but I think there have been a lot of races where, in the
wet conditions it mixes up the field and also sometimes it happens that
the podium looks different.
Nice to see a proper full conference! And with Kimi right in the centre, I’m sure he enjoyed that very much. At least he was placed next to his buddy Sebastien! You might already know that Hamilton and McLaren have been disqualified from the Australian GP, as judging from the teams’ radio transmissions and what they were being told, the FIA felt they were misled or in other words, deceived. Even though Whitmarsh insists otherwise. Oh dear, that is very serious. And just when I was beginning to admire Hamilton. A bunch of lying and manipulative jokers – not exactly very good for the sport. If it was April Fools today, then maybe, but that was yesterday. I think the FIA have, for once, done the right thing and carried out justice for Trulli and Toyota. I do wonder why the FIA couldn’t have checked all the radio transmission on the day and decided the result as soon as possible. These lingering investigations and championship standings meddling isn’t very professional or respectful to the sport and the (honest ) competitors.
Anyway, roll on Malaysia! The humidity should be good for Ferrari and as for our support, nothing can dampen our spirits. Those rain clouds might though. Let’s try and fight for the win again and keep flying! ~