Korea Grand Prix – Friday Practice: “I hit the wall”

| Source: autosport.com | lotusf1team.com | quotes, photos and video |

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After a massive effort from the boys in the garage, Kimi Raikkonen joins Romain Grosjean following his heavy crash in FP1 to maximise running in FP2… Here’s how it went.

FP2 Times: FP2 Report

Pos Driver                Team                   Time        Gap    Laps
 1. Lewis Hamilton        Mercedes               1m38.673s           31
 2. Sebastian Vettel      Red Bull-Renault       1m38.781s  +0.108s  30
 3. Nico Rosberg          Mercedes               1m38.797s  +0.124s  32
 4. Mark Webber           Red Bull-Renault       1m38.844s  +0.171s  35
 5. Felipe Massa          Ferrari                1m39.114s  +0.441s  30
 6. Romain Grosjean       Lotus-Renault          1m39.226s  +0.553s  34
 7. Fernando Alonso       Ferrari                1m39.444s  +0.771s  31
 8. Kimi Raikkonen        Lotus-Renault          1m39.757s  +1.084s  33
 9. Jenson Button         McLaren-Mercedes       1m39.774s  +1.101s  29
10. Adrian Sutil          Force India-Mercedes   1m40.006s  +1.333s  34
11. Paul di Resta         Force India-Mercedes   1m40.007s  +1.334s  34
12. Sergio Perez          McLaren-Mercedes       1m40.152s  +1.479s  31
13. Esteban Gutierrez     Sauber-Ferrari         1m40.186s  +1.513s  33
14. Nico Hulkenberg       Sauber-Ferrari         1m40.210s  +1.537s  34
15. Jean-Eric Vergne      Toro Rosso-Ferrari     1m40.446s  +1.773s  30
16. Daniel Ricciardo      Toro Rosso-Ferrari     1m40.552s  +1.879s  26
17. Pastor Maldonado      Williams-Renault       1m41.117s  +2.444s  35
18. Valtteri Bottas       Williams-Renault       1m41.289s  +2.616s  34
19. Giedo van der Garde   Caterham-Renault       1m42.461s  +3.788s  36
20. Charles Pic           Caterham-Renault       1m42.798s  +4.125s  35
21. Jules Bianchi         Marussia-Cosworth      1m43.108s  +4.435s  31
22. Max Chilton           Marussia-Cosworth      1m43.441s  +4.768s  29

FP1 Times: FP1 Report

Lewis Hamilton set the pace in opening practice for the Korean Grand Prix as Kimi Raikkonen suffered a big crash at the end of the session.

As the session was coming to a close, Raikkonen lost control of his Lotus and crashed heavily at the final corner, causing heavy damage to his car.

The Finn was able to walk away from the crash, but the team faces a race against the time to have the car ready for second practice.

Pos Driver                Team                  Time       Gap    Laps
 1. Lewis Hamilton        Mercedes              1m39.630s           20
 2. Sebastian Vettel      Red Bull-Renault      1m39.667s  +0.037s  20
 3. Mark Webber           Red Bull-Renault      1m39.816s  +0.186s  19
 4. Nico Rosberg          Mercedes              1m40.117s  +0.487s  20
 5. Jenson Button         McLaren-Mercedes      1m40.215s  +0.585s  22
 6. Fernando Alonso       Ferrari               1m40.374s  +0.744s  18
 7. Romain Grosjean       Lotus-Renault         1m40.396s  +0.766s  19
 8. Kimi Raikkonen        Lotus-Renault         1m40.677s  +1.047s  15
 9. Sergio Perez          McLaren-Mercedes      1m40.860s  +1.230s  20
10. Felipe Massa          Ferrari               1m40.880s  +1.250s  13
11. Nico Hulkenberg       Sauber-Ferrari        1m40.899s  +1.269s  20
12. Adrian Sutil          Force India-Mercedes  1m41.432s  +1.802s  18
13. Pastor Maldonado      Williams-Renault      1m41.482s  +1.852s  22
14. Esteban Gutierrez     Sauber-Ferrari        1m41.626s  +1.996s  21
15. Jean-Eric Vergne      Toro Rosso-Ferrari    1m41.924s  +2.294s  19
16. Valtteri Bottas       Williams-Renault      1m42.002s  +2.372s  20
17. Daniel Ricciardo      Toro Rosso-Ferrari    1m42.043s  +2.413s  18
18. James Calado          Force India-Mercedes  1m43.008s  +3.378s  21
19. Charles Pic           Caterham-Renault      1m43.660s  +4.030s  20
20. Giedo van der Garde   Caterham-Renault      1m43.883s  +4.253s  19
21. Max Chilton           Marussia-Cosworth     1m44.100s  +4.470s  14
22. Rodolfo Gonzalez      Marussia-Cosworth     1m46.810s  +7.180s  10

Video: Kimi’s crash in FP1



Crash nothing special – Raikkonen

“I went off,” Raikkonen explained. “I just lost the rear of the car and that was it; it was nothing special. These things can happen, but luckily the team managed to fix the car for the second session, so we didn’t lose much [time].”

In the second session, Raikkonen complained about the steering of the car pulling to the right but suspects it can be solved with more work.

“It was related to my crash, as the team didn’t have time to work on the power steering, so it wasn’t right after the crash,” he said. “They had to fix the car in a short period of time and ran out of time to sort the steering problem before the start of the second session.”

Raikkonen said the impact had not hurt his back, which he struggled with in Singapore, but the kerb on the exit of Turn 8 had caught his attention when he ran wide at the corner.

“Well, it’s not ideal, particularly on the kerb coming out of Turn 8,” he added. “That kerb is not very smooth and once I couldn’t get out of it and it wasn’t very nice. So I’ll try to stay away from it, because when you touch it at high speed it kinds of pulls you even further into it.”

Lotus Team Quotes:

Kimi Raikkonen – 8th/8th: “Obviously it didn’t help that I destroyed part of the car this morning; maybe I ran out of talent there! It didn’t cause too much damage and the car was fine for the second practice, even if the guys had quite a hurry to fix it. They did a good job and we managed to complete everything we wanted today. The car feels quite strong – especially on the long runs – so that’s good news for the race. On the short runs it wasn’t exactly as I wanted, but we still have some time to make improvements there.”

Romain Grosjean – 7th/6th: “My first two runs this morning weren’t perfect, so we decided to change a few things during the break but that didn’t exactly go to plan either. Finding the right balance for a full lap here is quite tricky as the different sectors are quite unique from each other, but eventually we returned to a more conventional setup for a run on the option tyres and the car felt much better. This circuit is a bit more front limited which doesn’t particularly help us, but hopefully the track evolution will bring it towards us a bit more tomorrow. Half a second to the leaders is a bit of a gap and they look pretty quick, so I think top five is a realistic target in qualifying, but of course we’ll do our best to catch them.”

Alan Permane: “It was a fairly routine Friday aside from Kimi’s small off this morning which looked a lot worse than it was, resulting primarily in some front trackrod and rear corner damage for us to repair. We lost some time at the start of the second session whilst the rectification work was completed, but this didn’t impact on our programme today. We completed long runs with both cars in the afternoon to give us plenty of data for analysis ahead of Sunday. As illustrated a few times, the track was quite slippery to start the weekend, which is something we expect to see improve throughout tomorrow and Sunday. The tyres are behaving as expected, with a smaller performance difference between the two compounds than what we saw in Singapore, which is in line with our predictions.”

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