Kimi Raikkonen: “The red flags seem to destroy my laps all the time”
"Our race pace looked good in practice so we’re still in with a chance."
After a decent qualifying session, there is plenty of potential for points among the Alfa Romeo duo of Kimi Raikkonen and Antonio Giovinazzi heading into round 7 tomorrow afternoon.
While Antonio will take off from P13 at the Circuit Paul Ricard, Kimi Räikkönen – who was on course for a better result – will begin tomorrow’s battle from P17 after having to give up his fastest attempt as the session was brought to an early end.
Antonio managed to set a time good enough to avoid elimination at the end of Q1, to go on and deliver a good result in P13 – just 0.2s off a place in the top ten.
Speaking about today’s results, Frédéric Vasseur, Team Principal Alfa Romeo, and CEO Sauber Motorsport AG said;
“The team did a good job today and we are confident we would have been on course to have a good result with both cars, hadn’t it been for the second red flag.
“As things went, we have to be really happy with the position Antonio achieved: he will be able to start on the best possible tyres and we’ll have all strategy options open to us.
“Kimi’s race will be a bit more difficult, starting from the back, but with a good start and a good strategy, we can hope to make up some places. Our race pace looked good in practice so we’re still in with a chance.”
Meanwhile, Raikkonen aired his frustration over having to abort his flying lap due to the red flag and said;
“Recently, the red flags seem to destroy my laps all the time.
“I was on a good one, the time was going to be ok, but when the red flag came out it was game over. In the end, that’s what it is and there’s nothing I can do about it.
“P17 on the grid is not ideal, but tomorrow is another day: our race pace was ok yesterday so we will try to get a result out of a disappointing Saturday.”
Giovinazzi is heading into tomorrow’s battle with an optimistic view on gaining places from lights out.
“We can be happy about today’s result: our target was P11, to be close to the top ten but not quite in it, as we knew the soft tyres would not be a good compound for the race”, he said.
“We nearly hit this target and we were very close to the cars ahead of us: tomorrow there’s everything to play for.
“Choosing our starting tyre will allow us to maximise our strategy: if we have a good start and a clean first lap, we can make up some places and make our way into the points. Our race pace wasn’t bad so we can be confident.”