Hungary: Thursday FIA press conference | video

Source: autosport.com

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Q. Kimi, presumably you feel the same way about the crowd, but what about the car. Is it progressing? People were talking about it as a winner earlier this season. Is it keeping up that reputation? Is it keeping that performance?

Kimi RAIKKONEN: Well, it hasn’t won any races, so it’s not a winner. I mean, we have a good package but for many races we probably haven’t got the best out of it in all conditions at all races but that’s up to us. We are still pretty happy but of course you want to do better. We wish to win races but it hasn’t happened so far, so hopefully we can win some this year. It’s not easy and we know that. We keep trying to improve things and learn from the things that we do and we’ll see what we can do in the second part [of the season].

Q. Is fourth the best you can do at the moment and is qualifying an emphasis for you?

KR. We had a good speed last weekend, apart from the rain. We couldn’t get anything in the rain for some reason. That really put us in a not very good position. If it’s a dry weekend… the car has been good in the wet in Silverstone but for some reason not in qualifying in the last race. I think we’re finding the place where I want to be with the car and the set-up and things like that and hopefully we can be a bit better here than we were last week.

Q. (Péter Farkas – Autó-Motor) Kimi, we have not really heard anything about the infamous power steering lately. Have you and the team taking a step forward regarding that? And before, did you have any real life situations where you felt you couldn’t achieve a better result because of the power steering?

KR. There’s no point to talk about it because I mean, when we say something people try to make a massive story out of it. Like I always said, it’s not perfect – it’s still not – it’s improved a lot since we started. But still a way to go. It’s OK to race, it’s not like it’s somehow going to make me one second faster or half a second faster if we going to get it exactly as we want. And this is… I know that I’ve driven better ones and there’s definitely still things that we can improve. We’re working for it, but it’s not the easiest thing to get right. So we have to work on those and hopefully at some point we will get it exactly as we want.

Q. (Gabor Joo – Index) Kimi and Fernando; Red Bull have these new engine mapping rules for this weekend. Do you expect Red Bull to struggle a bit?

FA. I think it’s a question for Red Bull.

KR. I don’t know what they’re doing so we will see.

Q. (Livio Oricchio – O Estado de Sao Paulo) Kimi, when you look back at the two years that you were out of Formula One, do you think they have had any influence in your performance up to now? And what happened when you were leaving Hockenheim? We saw some pictures (of him tripping over a barrier he was trying to climb over)…

KR. I almost fell down. It was close!

I was two years out (of Formula One). I was doing different things and I don’t think that if I’d been driving two years in Formula I would be any different really. I maybe took a few practices, a few races to know everything exactly (when I came back). Of course it’s a new team, so it took a bit to get to know everybody there and to get everything exactly as I wanted, but I think we’re getting there now and it hasn’t been too bad really. It’s been OK.

Q. (Heikki Kulta – Turun Sanomat) Kimi, what is the maximum to be achieved with Lotus in the Constructors’ and Drivers’ championships and which one is more important for you?

KR. I will tell you at the end of the year. We will try to do the maximum all the time. I don’t know where we’re going to end up. We’re doing pretty OK now. I think they didn’t probably expect us to do so well as a team at the beginning of the year, and we try to improve and hopefully we will manage to do that. We’re in the fight for the top three. We’re now fourth in the team championship and I’m fourth in the drivers. We go race-by-race and on my side try to score as many points as I can, and try to help the team… I guess they want to be as high as they can in the team championship. For me I want to be as high as I can from my side. Both things really influence each other so we will just try to do better and hopefully manage to do that.

Q. (Harry Kiner – ARA Radio) A question for all of you, except Fernando; do you think that Fernando’s going to make it this year?

KR. Fernando is definitely in the best position right now, but like he said himself, you have one or two bad weekends and somebody else suddenly does well in those races and it changes very quickly. There are too many races to go, still, to look into it too much but then we will see what will happen at the end of the last race.

Q. (Harry Kiner – ARA Radio) And again, to you all, are you going to watch the Olympics?

KR. I think it’s hard to miss the Olympics even if you would like to. I will look at some on TV, but it’s not really sport that I’m following. For sure, there will be some TV so I will watch it.

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3 responses

  1. Lars

    The Finn’s did a One Two to the press conference. A Sign maybe?

    July 27, 2012 at 6:35 am

    • Leonardo

      Doubtful

      July 27, 2012 at 10:18 am

  2. Another interview with Kimi, from Russian media:

    http://www.f1news.ru/interview/raikkonen/77571.shtml

    Question: Are you pleased that the ratings of TV coverage in the Finnish Formula 1 are steadily growing – and all because you’re back in the championship and performing so well? Or you don’t care?
    KR: Actually, I do not care. No, of course, if a Finnish athlete achieves success (no matter who it is – skier or ski jumper or someone else) the audience responds to, and interest is growing. Conversely, if in any sport, not only in Formula 1, there is no progress, the interest falls – it is absolutely normal. So it’s great that people are watching the race again, but for me, honestly, there is much difference.

    I do my job – if the audience watching it – good. If not – in my life, nothing changes. (Chuckles) But honestly, I’m still pleased … But, you know, I have to push the same way – whether I have a fan, or millions. But if in different countries (in some more, in some less) people like what we do – it’s good for me and for the team.

    Question: According to statistics, more podiums in the middle of the championship than it is now, you only had in the best years of your career. How would you rate this season?
    KR: I do not think that this is my job to put some estimates. But I’m happy with how things are going, though probably in a few races we could do better. Although, one can always argue that the situation could be better or worse, so we’ll try to make the second half of the championship even more successful.

    Question: So, you are happy but not surprised that everything was going so well?
    KR: But I know how it works in Formula 1 and I, of course, it helps that the team has built a good car. I do everything in my power, and if this is sufficient for good results – so that’s enough. But so far we have not been able to win races, so I hope we have yet to show [how good we are].

    Still, Formula 1 remains the same, only the team has changed, and when it is possible to perform well, it makes your life easier. Although for me, little has changed in the championship since my first Grand Prix. People are basically the same, races are held on the same tracks, and even when you change the team it is still little for you that is changing.

    Q: It seems that you are already quite comfortable behind the wheel of Lotus E20: is it you already got used to the car, or is it a progress of the team that understands better how to configure a car for you?
    KR: Well, in the last race I was more pleased with the machine than at any other stage of the season, but this is explained by the fact that we continue to work on the E20, continue to search for optimal settings, and we have achieved something.

    There were certain reasons why a number of previous races went down not that successfully; but hopefully, we were able to understand. If it continues as well as in Hockenheim, I think we will be able to show good results on all tracks.

    Q: Do you mean that now you don’t have previous problems with the steering?
    KR: Not only, I’m talking about the settings in general. Although, the power steering still works imperfectly, but definitely better than at the beginning of the year. We continue to deal with this, but it’s not the easiest task.

    Q: Can you say that the Lotus F1 has become a truly “your” team, work in it is comfortable, and team understands you well?
    KR: No, it’s not my team! (Laughs) It belongs to other people! I was just here to work, performing in the races. But we work together really well. Of course, communication between drivers and all the experts are gradually gaining strength, but it’s ok, that process takes time, because we have started to work together only recently, and there are now almost no tests in F1.

    Q: What do you think on which of the remaining tracks you will have the best chance of winning?
    KR: In general, we had a nice run in all previous races, so hopefully we can fight for victory at all tracks, but the team must continue to upgrade the machine, because the rivals are not standing still. Maybe we can win at the Hungaroring is, or it will happen at other track – I do not know …

    Question: In your career have you tried different categories – not only in Formula 1 and rally, but also on American racing oval tracks: from a professional point of view what gives you more pleasure?
    KR: It’s all very different types of races, and it is very difficult to compare. In America, a completely different racing culture, especially when it comes to NASCAR. And the rally has very little in common with the other categories. But they are all very interesting, and I have always enjoyed, wherever I performed. And I would be happy to start again in rally or race on the oval.

    But, of course, the hardest discipline of all – it’s rally. NASCAR looks simple, but they also have their tricks, and to be fast on the ovals – another kind of science. But I like that, there is a very tough competition, and the minimum distance between vehicles. Besides, I like the more relaxed (than in the F1) atmosphere that accompanies American races. I hope someday I will find time and go back to America. But to compare these categories, I would not …

    July 27, 2012 at 11:59 am

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