Sunday in Abu Dhabi: “Leave me alone!”
Kimi cements his position as Formula 1’s comeback king by taking victory in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix; the 19th win of his Formula 1 career and the 48th for an Enstone team.
Q: So… How are you feeling?
KR: I’m very happy for the team, and for myself also. You never know what’s going to happen during the race; the safety cars made it quite tricky, but I’ve done similar races many, many times this year. Today we had a clear circuit to be able to use our speed. Perhaps we were not the fastest at the end of the race, but we were fast enough and consistent enough to win. So it’s great for the team; we’ve had some difficult races in the second half of the season so it’s fantastic come back with a win.
Q: How difficult was it getting everything coming together this weekend?
KR: I’ve been saying already that we have the speed in the race but if we keep messing it up on the Saturdays and putting ourselves in that position then we cannot use the lap time speed and then the result will be like what happened in the last race. This weekend we knew that the race start would make all the difference, and make or break it, so the aim was to make a good start and follow Lewis. McLaren were a bit faster but you have to finish to win, and they had some issues.
Q: How does it feel to be on the top step again? Pretty special to have that 19th win?
KR: To be honest it’s just another win in the list of them. It’s great of course, because it’s been a few years, but the wins prior to this one were very similar, we didn’t have the best car, but we fought and still won. It’s great to win now, so people will stop asking me if I can win or not, and at least it makes it a bit clearer!
Q: Is it good that you’ve answered that ‘when’s the win coming’ question?
KR: I never cared really what people think – if I don’t finish the next race, then they’ll think that I’m as bad as that race. I’ll just do my thing, and if I’m happy with what I’m doing and it’s the best it can be for the team, then that’s that. So then I really don’t care if people are thinking differently of me now, than what they did three hours before the race.
Q: Are you going to have a legendary Kimi party tonight?
KR: Well, to be honest it’s usually the same, it doesn’t matter if I lose or win, it doesn’t change the parties!