(Conducted by Sir Jackie Stewart)
Well, congratulations on a fantastic race, you must be very happy and it’s a hell of a season you’re having. Well done. Kimi – terrific. Happy?
Kimi RAIKKONEN: Obviously you’re never happy when you finish second but I think after a difficult start to the year I’m a bit pleased to get some result – a bit better result. Obviously we came through in the end very quickly but we run out of the laps but I think we have to be happy after where we qualified, after we finished, but obviously we’re looking for a bit better results still.
Well, it’s a terrific success for Ferrari to come back as strongly as this. You must be pleased about that?
KR: Yeah, I’m very happy how the team is working and obviously after last year where we are now is a big step and everyone is working very well together. The atmosphere is good now and we have a good direction to keep pushing. It seems to be working well and things are improving, so I’m sure as a team we’ll get there and to be able to be all the time fighting for wins, but it will take a little more time.
Q: Kimi, fourth on the grid, second at the finish, first podium since Korea 2013. Alternative strategy for you. Obviously the middle stint was the key to your grand prix. Tell us about that and the pace that you were able to maintain against everybody else on the softer tyre. But also, you questioned at the end the decision to go onto the soft tyre – how did that work out, was it the right thing to do in the end?
KR: I think we had a few different plans. How to run the race and obviously this one was one of them. It all really depended where we are after a few laps. But I think we did a very good job out of it and the medium tyres worked very well for me in the second stint and I could pretty much… quite easily keep up with them, even catch them. They were working fine so obviously I was wondering if it’s the right choice to go on the soft at the end – but obviously it was the correct choice, they were much faster still. So, I was able to catch Nico and got past him. We did more or less the maximum that we could do today and obviously if you think that we were ahead of Nico earlier, he got past me on lap two or three or something, so we lost some time but I think we had a pretty good race and hopefully we can have many more.
QUESTIONS FROM THE FLOOR
Q: (Heikki Kulta – Turun Sanomat) Kimi, after being fourth in Malaysia and China and being out of top three for 18 months, how much do you appreciate this comeback to the podium?
KR: Obviously it’s much nicer than being out of it but, you know, you come second and obviously we got quite close to the Mercedes today but it’s a bit disappointing after that always – but I’d rather take this one than something else. You cannot feel happy. We are happy to be second but it’s still disappointing. It’s not what we want to do. Big thanks to the team. I had a pretty hard time last year. This year in the beginning, just some bad luck in the races but, you know, the team has done a great job over the winter and everybody is pushing together, in the same direction and I’m sure we are only going to get stronger and better as a team and improve the car. So, it’s a great place to be.
Q: (Khodr Rawi – F1Zone.net) Kimi, do you think the only possibility to beat Mercedes is by trying a different strategy, trying to undercut them because beating them on track seems a bit difficult now?
KR: Well, I don’t think it’s the only way. Obviously on some circuits we can get closer, some not, but I think obviously the first step is to improve our package, that will happen in the future and hopefully get closer. One step is to qualify more higher up, make better starts and go from there. I think we had a pretty decent speed today but obviously if you’re behind any cars and you lose any seconds, you will pay a price for it in the end. I think we just have to keep working and improving the whole package and how we do things. I’m sure we will get there and we can fight for wins every weekend after that.
Q: (Michael Schmidt – Auto, Motor und Sport) Kimi, you were flying in the second and third stints on both type of tyre but you struggled in the first stint. Have you any idea why?
KR: I wasn’t struggling really. I didn’t feel that it was much problem. I got passed by Nico, I passed him at the start and I got passed by him and obviously you lose quite a bit of time and Page ? of ? 3 4 then he passed Seb and we were pretty close to each other. I felt I was faster but obviously it’s pretty hard to pass. I think that we did the maximum, more or less. Yesterday we lost a place to Nico, but after that, once we got the mediums and the new set of softs at the end, the car was very good, so I could keep up good speed and everything was running smoothly, but already at that point we were a bit too far off first place.
Q: (Matt Youson – Racetech) Kimi, can you tell us how this year’s car is an improvement on last season’s. Everybody talks about the power unit but is it just that or is there a lot more?
KR: Obviously a big chunk of it is the engine itself. It’s a big improvement on horsepower plus reliability but you cannot just give all the credit to them. The car has improved a lot: much more downforce, the car is handling much better because of that, and obviously how the whole package has been done and put together. I think the big key is that all areas have improved quite a bit plus the people have been working more closely, as one team putting it together more nicely, so obviously the end result is what we have now and then as I said earlier, I’m very happy how things are going, very happy with the team and I think not many people expected after last year that we can be in this kind of position this early and now we are going in the right direction, so I’m sure we will get there but we want to start winning races more often and we just have to have some patience and do the work that we’ve done so far and we will get there.
Q: (Khodr Rawi – F1Zone.net) To all three of you: is the challenge of the championship against the rival teams more difficult than against your teammate, because you don’t know what others have or what others are planning in terms of strategy and that sort of thing?
LH: It’s all hard. It’s difficult to say which one is harder. When you’re fighting the guy in your team with the same car you’ve got the data. Sure it’s more on the limit when you’re fighting another team. There’s pros and cons, there are advantages and disadvantages on each side. You just try to do your best job, that’s what motor racing is all about, to be fighting other teams, that’s what we’re here to do.
NR: It’s both different but both tough. It’s difficult to go into the details but it’s tough to battle Lewis last year and this year and it’s tough now to battle the Ferraris now that they’re in the mix.
KR: I think it doesn’t make a lot of difference. Obviously with your teammate you more or less know what he’s doing and in the race when he’s going to stop but you have to beat all of them so it’s really the same end result.
| Source: fia.com |
One runner-up spot and one fifth place for Ferrari come the end of the Bahrain Grand Prix. Kimi Raikkonen staged a great climb up the order, which ended in him passing Nico Rosberg two laps from the end.
The Finn crossed the line 3 seconds behind the Mercedes of race winner Lewis Hamilton. Sebastian Vettel finished fifth, spending much of the race trying to pass Valtteri Bottas in the Williams, while never having a real chance to attack. Now the Formula 1 circus has a three week break before the action resumes at the first European leg of the 2015 Championship, the Spanish Grand Prix at the Barcelona circuit. [ferrari.com]
|1||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team||Mercedes||1h35m05.809s|
|2||Kimi Raikkonen||Scuderia Ferrari||Ferrari||3.380s|
|3||Nico Rosberg||Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team||Mercedes||6.033s|
|4||Valtteri Bottas||Williams Martini Racing||Williams/Mercedes||42.957s|
|5||Sebastian Vettel||Scuderia Ferrari||Ferrari||43.989s|
|6||Daniel Ricciardo||Infiniti Red Bull Racing||Red Bull/Renault||1m01.751s|
|7||Romain Grosjean||Lotus F1 Team||Lotus/Mercedes||1m24.763s|
|8||Sergio Perez||Sahara Force India F1 Team||Force India/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|9||Daniil Kvyat||Infiniti Red Bull Racing||Red Bull/Renault||1 Lap|
|10||Felipe Massa||Williams Martini Racing||Williams/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|11||Fernando Alonso||McLaren Honda||McLaren/Honda||1 Lap|
|12||Felipe Nasr||Sauber F1 Team||Sauber/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|13||Nico Hulkenberg||Sahara Force India F1 Team||Force India/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|14||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber F1 Team||Sauber/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|15||Pastor Maldonado||Lotus F1 Team||Lotus/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|16||Will Stevens||Manor Marussia F1 Team||Marussia/Ferrari||2 Laps|
|17||Roberto Merhi||Manor Marussia F1 Team||Marussia/Ferrari||3 Laps|
|–||Max Verstappen||Scuderia Toro Rosso||Toro Rosso/Renault||Retirement|
|–||Carlos Sainz||Scuderia Toro Rosso||Toro Rosso/Renault||Retirement|
|–||Jenson Button||McLaren Honda||McLaren/Honda||Not started|
QUOTES + STUFF
From richlandf1.com – Kimi: “Obviously we came through in the end very quickly, but we ran out of laps. I think we have to be happy after that and where we qualified. I’m very happy with how the team is working. After last year, where we are now is a big step. Everyone is working very well together, and the atmosphere is very good now. We have a good direction to keep pushing. It seems to be working well. Things are improving. I’m sure as a team we will get there and be able to be fighting for wins, but it will take a bit more time.”
From espn.co.uk (podium comments) – Kimi: “Obviously you are never happy when you finish second but after a difficult start to the year I’m a bit pleased to get some result. We came through in the end very quickly but we ran out of laps. I think we have to be happy after where we qualified but we will be looking for better results soon. I think we did more or less the right calls. We lost a bit of time at the beginning with Nico getting past. Obviously afterwards it’s easier to say, but that’s how we planned it and I think it worked out pretty well.”
From autosport.com – Kimi: “We had decent speed today, I think we just have to keep working and improving the whole package. I’m sure we will get there and we can fight every weekend after that. I’m very happy with the team and I think many people didn’t expect after last year that we would be in this position this early. We will start winning [more] races. We have to be patient and do the same work as we have done so far and we will get there. The whole package has gone forward. A big chunk of it is the engine but you cannot give all the credit to them. The car has improved a lot, there’s a lot more downforce, it’s handling a lot better. All areas have improved, that is the key. People are working more closely, which has helped us get to where we have now. I think we had a few different approaches of how to run the race. On the medium tyre it was quite easy to catch up to them. In the end it was the right choice to go soft – we were much faster still. We did more or less the maximum we could have done, we had a pretty good race and hopefully we can have a few more.”
From ferrari.com – Kimi: “After a difficult year last year and a beginning of the season that was a bit unlucky, it’s great to be back on the podium. I have mixed emotions, it’s a great feeling to be back, but we want to be on the top. The start was really good , I managed to pass Nico, but then I lost the position and there I lost a bit of time. The strategy was perfect, we did the right calls and the right tyre choice , I was happy with the car , we kept up a good speed through the whole race. In the last laps I was getting closer and closer and could see Hamilton, but the race was at its end, we would have needed more laps to try to do something. I think we are still a little bit behind the Mercedes but in some circuits and some conditions we ca be very competitive, especially in the race. Today we did our best , we have to be happy with the result , we did the maximum and took some good points for the team. We keep improving step by step, we just have to keep working doing the same things in the same direction,and I’m sure we’ll get there.”
From crash.net – Arrivabene: “I am delighted. I am happy for Kimi because now we have two drivers and this is what I am looking for. I’m happy for Kimi because now I can say officially that Kimi is back and we have two strong drivers. We had a clear strategy for the two drivers and then Seb made two little mistakes. The big one was at the beginning so we were obliged to change the strategy for Seb. Kimi, we told to follow our strategy. At a certain point he was not really convinced and we said ‘no, we stay as we are’ and he was brave enough and disciplined enough to follow. It was a good result. Regarding Seb, I have to say he made two big mistakes but we don’t have to forget what he has done up to now. He won one race and two podiums so sometimes it happens. We are humans, thank God and that is the beauty of the sport.”
From ferrari.com – Arrivabene: “I am really happy for Kimi: today I can officially state that he’s back. He showed what a race animal he is, and if he had had a few more laps perhaps… Also, I am happy for the team, because they worked really well. Sebastian made a couple of mistakes today, one at the beginning, which forced us to change his race strategy, whereas in the case of Kimi we followed our plans. He was not totally convinced about it at a point, but showed a great deal of discipline in following instructions from the pit-wall. As for Seb, he actually made something wrong, otherwise we could have had two drivers on the rostrum; but he’s a human being as we all are. He’s a fantastic driver and let’s not forget now what he has already achieved so far. I wish to thank everybody back at Maranello, because they were able to work on the engine development, but also on every single component, achieving over three months what normally would have required twice as much. I can’t tell if we are going to catch the Mercedes, but I do like the idea of putting some pressure on them. Today we were aware of the gap between them and ourselves, and that required an aggressive strategy. Having said that, with regard to the Friday log runs where we had showed a good pace, the temperature was much lower today, and we had to react accordingly.”
— Ky (@FiftyBuckss) April 20, 2015
All time F1 fastest laps: 1. Schumacher 77 2. Raikkonen 41 3. Prost 41 4. Mansell 30 5. Clark 28 Raikkonen now second of all time!
— Kimi Raikkonen™ (@theFakeKimi) April 19, 2015
Ferrari.com – Come the end of the third round of the Formula One World Championship, Scuderia Ferrari saw its drivers finish in third and fourth places. Sebastian Vettel made it to the bottom step of the podium and, having started sixth, Kimi Raikkonen came home fourth, thanks mainly to an excellent start. Both drivers set off on new Soft tyres and ran a two-stop strategy. Lewis Hamilton won ahead of his Mercedes team-mate, Nico Rosberg.
|9||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||32.117s|
|10||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|11||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|12||Fernando Alonso||McLaren/Honda||1 Lap|
|13||Jenson Button||McLaren/Honda||1 Lap|
|14||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1 Lap|
|15||Will Stevens||Marussia/Ferrari||2 Laps|
|16||Roberto Merhi||Marussia/Ferrari||2 Laps|
|17||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||4 Laps|
|–||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||Retirement|
|–||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||Retirement|
QUOTES + STUFF
From motorsport.com – Kimi: “I don’t see a reason why not [to win]. We have made big gains and we will make big gains during this year. Obviously everybody will improve so it depends what the rest are doing, so it definitely shows we are going in the right way and doing the right things. It is just being patient, we need time, we cannot make miracles overnight. Sebastian showed we can win, but it depends, one circuit is better for one team and the next could be a different story. We need to be up there when something happens to them, or the conditions change. I really feel we will get there to regularly beat them. It’s not ideal for the team to be beaten by Mercedes, but I think we have to be realistic where we are now compared to where we started last year, so we know what we are doing and if we keep working in the same way, then I am sure we will get there. Some races might be a bit closer, but after yesterday’s mistake it was more or less maximum. It’s good for the team but we are not happy to be third and fourth, and we want to really push for the wins, but we have to be happy as a team. We will keep pushing in the same direction as we have done so far push to the limits.”
From ferrari.com –Kimi: “Considering that my position on the starting grid today was not ideal, fourth place is a good result. My start was ok, I had quite a good jump off the line, and at the first corner I decided to go inside and at the end of the corner I was in the right place and managed to take the Williams under braking – my car is really good at that – and managed to pass them. The car was quite good today; the first set of tyres was a bit tricky, but I think it was the same for everybody, and then the next two sets were ok. Towards the end of the race I was catching up, I knew I had the speed and I thought I still had good tyres. I could still have had a chance to try and fight for podium but the safety car came in and we know we cannot change that. Today we got close to the podium, from the next race on we have to have a better weekend, doing everything right in qualifying, and we’ll do our best. As a team we scored the maximum today, we know we are behind Mercedes, but we have to be happy with the result. From tomorrow on we have to make another step to be able to challenge them every weekend; we’ll keep working hard as we have done since last year. We trust the way the team is working: now we have to be patient”.
Race start and Raikkonen overtakes the two Williams
— Ky (@FiftyBuckss) April 12, 2015
Funny team radio from Kimi yelling “get that McLaren out of the way” and “come on get these two cars out the way”
Post-race interview with Kimi and Maurizio Arrivabene:
The German chose to stay out during an early safety car period and assumed the lead. Vettel then made a two-stop strategy work while Mercedes did three stops with Hamilton and Nico Rosberg. It proved to be the wrong call for the world champion team as neither Hamilton nor Rosberg had the pace, tyre longevity or enough laps to catch and pass Vettel in the final stint.
It was Ferrari’s first victory since the 2013 Spanish Grand Prix, and Vettel’s first since that year’s season finale in Brazil.
Kimi Raikkonen recovered to a strong fourth in the second Ferrari having dropped to the back of the field following a puncture sustained in contact with Felipe Nasr’s Sauber on the first lap.
Scuderia Ferrari: Sebastian Vettel won the Malaysian Grand Prix for Ferrari at the wheel of his SF-15T. Having started from second on the grid, the German managed to finish ahead of the Mercedes duo of Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg. His team-mate Kimi Raikkonen finished fourth, after having to make an unscheduled pit stop on lap 2, because of a puncture. He then fought his way back up the order to finish just off the podium. The Formula 1 circus will be back in action after a two week break, at the Shanghai circuit in China.
|7||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m39.085s|
|8||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1 Lap|
|9||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1 Lap|
|10||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1 Lap|
|11||Romain Grosjean||Lotus/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|12||Felipe Nasr||Sauber/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|13||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|14||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|15||Roberto Merhi||Marussia/Ferrari||3 Laps|
View full gallery here.
From motorsport.com – Kimi: “I think it might be the conditions,” said Raikkonen of Ferrari’s form. “It was very hot and that’s good for us, but I think even in Melbourne if we could have got behind them [Mercedes] at the beginning I don’t think they would have pulled away a lot. We know that we are not exactly as fast as them over one lap, but we are working on that. But comparing where we finished last year and where we are this year it’s a big step. I think we did the maximum we could after that [being hit and punctured by Nasr]. There’s not much that I can do when I get touched from behind. It is what it is. Luckily there was a safety car and we had pretty okay speed although we had had damage from the car flapping around. Like I said, we did the maximum that we we could. It’s a very good result for the team with the win.”
From autosport.com – Kimi: “We’ve had a very poor weekend in the sense of things going wrong. I got a very bad start, wheelspin off the line and then the first corner I didn’t get a very good positions and lost some places. Then I gained some positions and was catching people, but then I got a puncture at the last corner so I had to do the whole lap. Luckily we had a safety car so that helped. But then I don’t know what the guys in front of me were doing because they were not going full speed to catch up so we were like one straight behind. I was asking if I could pass them but there was some confusion with the Sauber in front of me. That didn’t help either. Obviously for the team it’s a pretty good result. It could have been better but I think we did the maximum with what we had today.”
From ferrari.com – Kimi: “We had a pretty poor weekend in terms of things going wrong. I had a good speed but in qualify it didn’t go well and then today, after a poor start where I had too much wheelspin right off the line, I found myself fighting with all the other drivers and I had a puncture on the rear left tyre while battling Nasr at the last corner, which means I had to go one full lap before coming back to pits with no tyre. At that point my floor had got a little bit damaged, I had to do a full lap with no tyre and then, even if the safety car helped us, I had to start from way back behind. We did our best and the forth position was the maximum we could achieve. The win of Sebastian is a very good thing for him and for the whole team , knowing how difficult the last year has been; it’s a very good job what the team has done. We knew from winter testing that we have a good car, so it did not come as a total surprise, and probably the track with these high temperatures suited us. I don’t know how it will be in other circuits, but the car has been strong so far, not yet as we want but we have a good package, and we are getting stronger”.
From espn.co.uk – Arrivabene: “I have to say the discipline of the guys was amazing and the job of Seb was unbelievable. I have to congratulate also Kimi because he caught bad luck but still, from last position, was able to do a good job. During the race I was thinking about the briefing of this morning and I was looking at the discipline of the guys, drivers, engineers, and how they were working like a Swiss watch. But in this case it was a perfect Italian watch!”
Onboard Raikkonen – Start
Onboard Raikkonen – Puncture