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kr-mel-qlf-2014Report: Qualifying was made particularly tricky because of rain and it ended in less than brilliant circumstances for Scuderia Ferrari. Fernado Alonso was fifth fastest, leaving the impression he could have done better with a little bit of luck, while Kimi Raikkonen is twelfth on the sixth row, having hit the wall right at the end of Q2 in Albert Park.

Everyone rushed out on track in Q1 as the rain was clearly on its way, arriving four minutes from the end: Fernando was fourth fastest with a 1.31.388 on the Soft tyres, while Raikkonen was ninth in 1.32.439 on the Mediums.

In a wet Q2, the Intermediate tyres were called into service, and the Spaniard was third in 1.42.805, six tenths off Rosberg’s Mercedes. But Raikkonen was in the wall and out of proceedings, a fate he shared with two other champions, Button and Vettel.

  • A five-place grid penalty for Bottas moves Kimi up to 11th for the race tomorrow (view full grid list here).
  • Kimi admits traffic more costly than crash: “I didn’t have any more time to do an extra lap, so on that lap I would have come in anyway. I was playing around with the switches or something, and I got a little bit of wheelspin and touched the wall. But the car is more or less OK. It was just my mistake. I got a little bit of wheelspin, I wasn’t pushing anymore, but I couldn’t catch it. That didn’t change the fact we had traffic on the previous lap. There was a McLaren going very slowly through Turn 5, and there were some other cars in front of us, but that’s how it goes sometimes. In the wet we had the speed, it was just the traffic.”
Pos  Driver             Team/Car              Time       Gap
 1.  Lewis Hamilton     Mercedes              1m44.231s
 2.  Daniel Ricciardo   Red Bull-Renault      1m44.548s  +0.317s
 3.  Nico Rosberg       Mercedes              1m44.595s  +0.364s
 4.  Kevin Magnussen    McLaren-Mercedes      1m45.745s  +1.514s
 5.  Fernando Alonso    Ferrari               1m45.819s  +1.588s
 6.  Jean-Eric Vergne   Toro Rosso-Renault    1m45.864s  +1.633s
 7.  Nico Hulkenberg    Force India-Mercedes  1m46.030s  +1.799s
 8.  Daniil Kvyat       Toro Rosso-Renault    1m47.360s  +3.129s
 9.  Felipe Massa       Williams-Mercedes     1m48.079s  +3.848s
10.  Valtteri Bottas    Williams-Mercedes     1m48.147s  +3.916s
                   Q3 cut-off:           1m44.331s       **
11.  Jenson Button      McLaren-Mercedes      1m44.437s  +2.173s
12.  Kimi Raikkonen     Ferrari               1m44.494s  +2.230s
13.  Sebastian Vettel   Red Bull-Renault      1m44.668s  +2.404s
14.  Adrian Sutil       Sauber-Ferrari        1m45.655s  +3.391s
15.  Kamui Kobayashi    Caterham-Renault      1m45.867s  +3.603s
16.  Sergio Perez       Force India-Mercedes  1m47.293s  +5.029s
                   Q2 cut-off:           1m34.274s       ***
17.  Max Chilton        Marussia-Ferrari      1m34.293s  +4.118s
18.  Jules Bianchi      Marussia-Ferrari      1m34.794s  +4.619s
19.  Esteban Gutierrez  Sauber-Ferrari        1m35.117s  +4.942s
20.  Marcus Ericsson    Caterham-Renault      1m35.157s  +4.982s
21.  Romain Grosjean    Lotus-Renault         1m36.993s  +6.818s


Kimi Raikkonen: “Qualifying wasn’t straightforward today, especially because of traffic. When I was on a quick lap, I had a car in front of me at every corner. That stopped me getting a clean lap and at the end of Q2, I spun off damaging the front wing. I don’t think I’d have gone quicker anyway, as I had already reduced my speed at this point, because I knew already I wouldn’t make it to Q3. It’s a shame, because compared to yesterday we have made some steps forward. In the wet we were quick and I had more feeling for the car. We know we have a lot of work to do in every area, especially on car set-up, but at the same time, we are sure we are going in the right direction. Tomorrow’s race will be tough, the weather forecast is unclear and on top of that, with the new rules, it’s hard to predict how things will go. But it’s only the first race of the year and we will do our best to get a good result.”

Pat Fry: “Qualifying in the wet in Melbourne is nothing new, but today, added to the wet track, the drivers also had to deal with all the new technologies introduced in the regulations. We are not satisfied with the final result, even if the F14 T is still at the development stage and I believe the team is working in the right direction to make up ground to our rivals, especially Mercedes, who today confirmed the form they’d shown in winter testing. Our grid positions would suggest an uphill battle in the race, especially for Kimi and we can expect unknown factors linked to reliability and fuel consumption to count for a lot. As for the former factor, we are paying close attention to every little detail. At this point, we cannot allow ourselves to be distracted, because with such complicated systems, the unpredictable could come into play. In terms of race pace, we’ve seen some teams are faster than us, but I think the first race of the year could throw up some surprises, hopefully in our favour.”



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  1. Something to keep in mind..Kimi made it in Q1 on the hard tyres..Nando had to use the softer ones..


  2. Let’s hope he does better tomorrow. Good luck Kimi!


  3. Courtesy of Verena (@miezicat1)

    Kimi Raikkonen “Accident is my fault”
    #speedweek #interview #translation

    Kimi, can you describe what exactly happened during the accident please? And summarize the weekend especially since we have the impression that you’re currently struggeling more than Fernando.

    The Friday did not go as desired, that is true. Today, Saturday morning it was better. We are with the car not where we would have liked. But it will come. In qualifying I first went with the harder compound on the track and when I went to get the soft it began to rain. But the car felt okay. In the rain this track is always tricky, so I went off. At the exit of the curve I turned at a number of buttons, the wheels spun a little too much so I lost the car and collided into the wall. The nose is broken, but otherwise the car is okay.

    Seconds before you Perez came off in the same place. Did that play a role in the accident?

    No, it was completely my fault. The mad thing is that I wasn’t attacking, I would have gone to the box in this lap anyway. In the previous lap in turn 5 there was a McLaren going slowly which was the reason that my time has not been better.

    But again, we have the impression that you struggle with the Ferrari more than Alonso particularly with regard to the response of the engine and its power delivery.

    No, it’s not like that. With the accident that has nothing to do and as for the handling, I have more trouble with the setup which I already noticed in winter testing. It ‘s not about the engine response. But as I said – it is slowly getting better. If you were to ask me however whether I feel comfortable in the car I would answer: no, not yet.

    What role the weather will play tomorrow?

    A street circuit like Melbourne is always tricky so it doesn’t matter if we drive in the wet or dry. But it ‘s strange, when the Formula 1 comes to Melbourne then the good weather always seems to say goodbye.

    What can you do in the race ?

    This first Grand Prix is for all a step into the unknown. For myself it can’t actually go worse than in practice so we should be okay for the race. At which place it will end is impossible to say.

    Have you practiced many starts ?

    Some. But if you’re doing a practice start here from the pit lane then that is also not the same on the grid.

    How satisfied are you with the car in long run?

    The long runs are characterized primarily by fuel saving. We should be there in good shape. We know about what we are capable. But we don’t really know what we should think of the competition.

    What is Ferrari missing to drive on the level of Mercedes?

    Hard to say. Let’s wait a few races to assess the balance of power properly. Whether we must adopt at the power unit or the chassis, now I can not judge. I would answer – we need to be better everywhere. But this sentence I would have said last year too.

    How satisfied or dissatisfied are you with brake by wire?

    That’s not my problem, even if I had locked wheels a few times. It actually works quite well. Again, the problems have more to do with the setup and in dealing with the tires. We know where we want to go there. But that will not happen overnight.


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