Kimi Raikkonen wins 2013 Australian Grand Prix

2013 Australian Grand Prix summary

Kimi Raikkonen, Lotus, Melbourne, 2013Kimi Raikkonen came from seventh on the grid to win the Australian Grand Prix.

It was a strategic win for the Lotus team whose driver made just two pit stops while his closest rivals came in three times.

Fernando Alonso took second after making an early second stop to jump ahead of early leader Sebastian Vettel. Alonso gave chase of Raikkonen in the closing stages of the race but was unable to catch the Lotus.

Nor could Vettel, who took pole position in emphatic fashion earlier today, do anything to catch the Ferrari at the end of the race. It was a disappointing Grand Prix for Red Bull who locked out the front row of the grid but saw their cars come home third and sixth, Mark Webber losing several places at the start.

Felipe Massa kept Alonso behind at the start but was out-fumbled by his team mate in the pits and lost time behind Adrian Sutil later.

The Force India driver led several laps after starting the race on medium tyres. But he struggled for pace on the super-softs at the end of the race and came home seventh just ahead of team mate Paul di Resta.

Lewis Hamilton tried to do a two-stop strategy but had to convert to three after locking his tyres while battling with Alonso and needing an early second stop. Team mate Nico Rosberg retired with a technical problem.

Jenson Button and Romain Grosjean rounded out the points scorers, the latter making a poor start and struggling with his tyres late in the race. Sergio Perez was just outside the points on his McLaren debut after starting 15th.

A full race review will follow later.

2013 Australian Grand Prix

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80 comments on Kimi Raikkonen wins 2013 Australian Grand Prix

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  1. Andrew (@andrewsf1) said on 17th March 2013, 8:01

    What a race! I cannot recall the last time i didn’t wish for rain or a safety car to bring more excitement at the end of a race because there was so just much tension on every lap. I’m so happy for Kimi for such a nice win, seemed a bit unexpected until the last ~20 laps when I realized he wasn’t going to stop for a third time.
    A couple of things i didn’t like were the fact that Webber again had a very poor start (why does it seem to Me it only happens when he’s near Vettel?) and his first pit stop stationary time was 5.3s. When was the last time Vettel had a poor stop like that?
    Also it felt to me that once Massa got in front of Alonso and Massa successfully defended that he was actually faster and could have finished in front and maybe even overtake Vettel. But Alonso got ahead by performing a successful undercut. Very happy that there were no “Alonso is faster than You” messages and Ferrari gave Massa a fair chance to fight Alonso (all of Massa’s pit stops were just as fast as Alonso’s, unlike in Red Bull’s case), honestly wasn’t expecting that. Brilliant start to the season!

    • Aimal (@aimalkhan) said on 17th March 2013, 8:04

      I dont recall any races in the past where ferrari have sabotaged massa’s pit stops. Alonso needs massa to perform through out the season to take points off his rivals.

      • Cranberry said on 17th March 2013, 8:29

        Ferrari didn’t need to sabotage Massa in the pits, what they they did was keep him out on old tyres long enough to guarantee Alonso leapfrogging him.

        • robfff said on 17th March 2013, 8:56

          You clearly dont understand how decisions are made regarding strategy. Each side of the garage makes their own decisions and when one wants to pit, they ask if the other side is expecting to pit on the same lap. If they both want to pit on the same lap, then the lead car gets priority.

          As you would have seen, Alonoso’s side of the garage was risky in how they came in extra early, catching both Vettel and Massa off guard.

          If Massa’s side of the garage had been more on it, they could have done what Alonso had done, leaving Alonso out a lap longer. But they never.

          • clappy (@danielc) said on 17th March 2013, 10:17

            you’ve said this loads you are wrong my friend , so what if alo is p1 massa p2 its the car in front who gets first call. Back a few yrs ago it was better to stay out a lap longer but not on these tyre’s

  2. bosyber (@bosyber) said on 17th March 2013, 8:02

    Massa out-fumbled by Alonso, nicely put @keithcollantine. Red Bull have to work on tyres, and Webber’s side needs to sort those starts first, I think.

  3. Aditya F. Yahya (@adityafakhri) said on 17th March 2013, 8:04

    It could be more strategical season than last year.
    Shame on me, I was predicted Kimi’s win until Red Bull crush everybody on practice so I changed my mind :(

    • Droid Damudi (@droiddamudi) said on 17th March 2013, 9:19

      ya, same with me.

      after practice time i though its vettel to loose but i expected vet-kimi-alonso podium.

      next race i expect kimi to fight again, venue of his first win and he always goes well there.

  4. tmax (@tmax) said on 17th March 2013, 8:06

    A great Race….Kimi Sure Knows what he is doing…… Nice job Kimi…. again just feel short of my dream podium for the first race. Lewis instead of Alonso would have done it. Alonso drove a brilliant race. did not expect Kimi out there. I thought Alonso was going to win by a huge margin. I think if Sutil had not come into the way of Vettel in the first stint, he would have gotten close to Kimi.

    Over a great race to start with

  5. Webber… KERS problems again.

  6. DavidS (@davids) said on 17th March 2013, 8:06

    Does anybody else think the air intake for the Lotus looks somewhat like a baboons backside?

  7. bosyber (@bosyber) said on 17th March 2013, 8:07

    Bianchi a lap ahead of the next car, that’s the way to show your worth in a backmarker car.

  8. Kingshark (@kingshark) said on 17th March 2013, 8:08

    My armchair expert hypothesis:

    1. Red Bull and Mercedes are both quick at getting heat into the tyres, but wear them off quicker. That’s why they were better in qualy but slower in the race.

    2. Ferrari and Lotus are slower at getting the tyres up to temperature, but are much more gentle on them. That is why they were not so good in qualy but faster than anyone in the race.

    • bosyber (@bosyber) said on 17th March 2013, 8:10

      But Mercedes wasn’t bad, they stopped after ferrari for the first stop – but that may have been late for good strategy as they lost time from that.

      • Eggry (@eggry) said on 17th March 2013, 8:16

        I think Mercedes’ case is more about sensitive tyre operating window rather than just heating issue. as race went, temperature dropped and I think this is their weakness. Narrow operating window.

    • Eggry (@eggry) said on 17th March 2013, 8:12

      @kingshark I agree with your early verdict. with smoother tyre, I think Ferrari&Lotus’ way has upper hands.

    • ioannis (@ioannislalas) said on 17th March 2013, 8:14

      this is the case exactly, but lotus has a lot more to give in stable weather conditions during qualifying

  9. Yappy said on 17th March 2013, 8:09

    Fantastic to see Kimmi leading from the get go. I think this is the first time Ferrari are championship leaders in what feels like a generation. Early days yet.

  10. Eggry (@eggry) said on 17th March 2013, 8:10

    Great race. almost every drivers did very well except Grosjean and unlucky Hulk.

  11. Adam86 said on 17th March 2013, 8:11

    Not sure what to think of Mercedes; how much of the gap was a failed attempt at a 2 stop vs a lack of pace. Rosberg stopping was a big loss for Lewis – the fight with Alonso killed what was left of his strategy.

    Interesting to get a read in more normal temperatures next week.

  12. ioannis (@ioannislalas) said on 17th March 2013, 8:12

    and if we have stable conditions in qualifying sessions, then we will see a championship contender ……….Go KImi

  13. HUHHII (@huhhii) said on 17th March 2013, 8:14

    How is it even possible to dominate the race like that when starting from 7th place? Godlike drive from Kimi, well deserved win!
    Kiitos Kimi! (=Thank you Kimi in Finnish)

  14. Landes Berg (@landesberg) said on 17th March 2013, 8:14

    Well done Kimi. Now for the championship. ….again.

  15. Ginola14 (@ginola14) said on 17th March 2013, 8:20

    I assume this is a vastly popular win by Kimi Raikkonen with many F1 fans around.

    Would like to see this parlayed into a 2nd world championship for him which he deserves after the near-misses he had with McLaren before.

    • Adam Tate (@adam-tate) said on 18th March 2013, 7:44

      So very true. He won all the best driver awards in 05, despite Alonso taking the championship that year. If it weren’t for the McLaren’s horrible reliability that season he would have had the WDC too.

      03 was even closer, only the late season tire ruling against Michelin ended his chances. Without it he or Montoya in the Williams-BMW could have taken the title.

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