Kimi Raikkonen wins 2013 Australian Grand Prix

2013 Australian Grand Prix summaryPosted on Author Keith Collantine

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.

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80 comments on “Kimi Raikkonen wins 2013 Australian Grand Prix”

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  1. Why is everyone assuming Ferrari somehow tricked Massa. From all I could see it was Alonso and Andrea Stella calling their pitstop early in order to jump others. Massa would have been tricked if he pitted after Alonso, only if Alonso pitted after Vettel. But both Vettel and Massa pitted before Alonso in the first round, so Alonso pitting before Vettel means that he brought his own stop early, not that Massa’s stop was delayed. Massa pitted just as Vettel, which is in line with their first round of stops.

  2. Adrian Sutil showed he is too patriot like Shumacher in Brazil, a straight pass from Vettel in turn 2, while he was able to defend Massa’s attack which was more agressive for at least 3 consecutive laps and he made it hard for Fernando on a finished tyres,what’s wrong with these Germans !!!!!!!!!!!

    1. @tifoso1989 You clearly missed the part in which Sutil defended his position really well for a lot of laps on older tyres than Vettel’s.
      Vettel’s move after the pitstop was very good, he caught Sutil by surprise with an incredible braking. No patriotism involved there.

      1. You clearly missed the part in which Sutil defended his position really well for a lot of laps on older tyres than Vettel’s.

        Vettel putted him under pressure for a while but the gap was constant ,Vettel was not able to make any attack

        he caught Sutil by surprise

        I think there is mirrors on Sutil’s car, he didn’t try to cover the inside while after that when he was under pressure from the Ferrari’s he was weaving and to hold the racing linewhich is what he was suppose to do with Vettel
        if you watch again that was an easy pass, Sutil actually made it easy ,I think that maybe he was sleeping or he was too patriot

        1. Anthony Davidson covered this move on Sky F1. Vettel braked incredibly late and shot up the inside corner. Vettel just caught Sutil out as he didn’t expect Vettel to come up the inside and brake so very late.

          I think you are completely wrong to claim that just because they’re both German there is something untoward about a genuinely brave overtaking move. This was not the same as Vettel-Schumacher in Brazil.

    2. Sour grapes?

  3. Following Raikkonen on live timing sector by sector is an experience. Talking about performance on demand.

    I can’t help of thinking he always kept 2 sec space in order to not damage the tyres and did not wreck the tyres right after pit stop as most other driver did.

    1. I’m with you on this one.
      Live timing really helps putting things into perspective. For instance; if I remember correctly Fernandos second to out lap was well under 1:31,000, meanwhile Kimi did first few laps in mid 1:31,s (after their last pitstops).

  4. Pleased with kimi’s win, he’s got to be the best shot at beating Alonso and Vettel this year. Nothing to chose between those teams in race trim, Malaysia will be interesting as its hotter, so it will be a better reflection of who’s going to have the legs this year.

    Merc; similar to last year, good qualifying pace but it’s not good enough on its tyres to be a effective race car, but at Least Hamilton can be happy he’s left McLaren at exactly the right moment as it appears they are about to descend into the doldrums. I still think Merc won’t be able to make any ground on the front running teams, their in-season development has never been up to much.

    I think Mclaren need to abandon that car, it’s so bad its untrue. Carrying on trying to sort it it out is full hardy surely? Admitting defeat, binning it and reverting to the 2012 car at least short term has got to be the best option as that will be in the top 6 at worst. I don’t buy development potential, if a car is that bad out of the box, it’s got some massive design flaws that they are not going to solve. A car that is good to start with has development potential!!!

  5. I have 3 questions:
    1. Whay did Lewis risked so much in holding back Alonso only to pit a few corners after?
    2. What’s wrong with Massa? He gets free air in front of him and the best he can do is ask Smedley what to do. And Smedley was strange too: “Show what you can do…” like it was an audition not a race.
    3. Does anyone know what did Ferrari told Alonso on the radio just after he nearly crashed into the Caterham?

    1. For 3) I don’t speak Italian, but I thought I heard “Kimi” in the message so it may have been telling him to just bring it home. Also worth noting that the timing of the radio message may have been at any time in the lap or two prior to what we saw on video, as the messages are always on some sort of delay.

    2. Yeah I think Alonso was told that there was no point pushing any longer because they were not catching Kimi.

      2: I think it was a pure misjudgment from Massa. Clearly Massa misread the tyres and told the team he could go faster than Vettel if only he had clean air. So Ferrari kept him out so Massa could do as advertised, and as soon as they realised he had no speed in his pocket, they pulled him into the pits (two laps after Alonso and 1 after Vet).

      I think Massa’s strategists were too reactive, and so they lost out to the preemptive calls made by Alonso’s side of the garage.

  6. I cant help but feel that had Sutil not held up the Vettel/Massa/Alonso train, his strategy might not have worked.

    All while those three were trying to get past Sutil, Kimi was hanging a few seconds back going at his targeted (slow on purpose) pace to look after the tyres. So when normally the 3 stoppers would dart off into the distance, they were stuck going at the same pace as Kimi, except in dirty air and pushing much hard and wasting more rubber.

    I dont think Kimi’s strategy would have worked half as well at a track where overtaking is much easier.

    1. I agree with you but I also credit Kimi and Lotus for being opportunists – had Sutil not been holding up the 3 stoppers, Kimi could have switched to a three-stop strategy himself. In that case, he may not have won but he would have secured solid points.

      While the TV coverage celebrated Sutil, I can’t help but wonder if the blue flags weren’t really an error… rather a suggestion. Had he taken his medicine and run on the SS tires like everyone else, he would have been far from the leaders.

  7. Thomas (@smashnfanatic)
    17th March 2013, 9:11

    Yaay! Iceman won! Too bad I didn’t get to see the race. :) Go Kimi! you deserve it.

  8. Great Race. What a start to the year! Kimi was brilliant today, made that two stop work. Ferrari were quick and Fernando took a solid podium and a good start to the year. Red Bull surprised most people with their performance today, no doubt they will still be quick possibly in hotter conditions. Lewis did well for his first race and Mark Webber struggled badly. But Kimi was class, how he popped the fastest lap in on lap 23 of a 24 lap stint was immense.

  9. great start for kimi…hope to see a lot more like this and then the championship!!

  10. Magnum ice cream >>>>> Chorizo sausage

  11. I was shaking my head in disbelief when
    1. Bianchi was gradually closing in on Bottas.
    2. Sutil was pulling away from Vettel, who was holding up the Ferraris..

  12. Uh-huh…is this Paul DiResta or we are reading the diary of a wimpy kid?
    Adrian Sutil rules. Too bad that the tyres let him down…..

  13. Sutil prved that he’s a top driver. When he had the same tyres with the others, nobody could overtake him. 100% value!

  14. The most stupid thing of the race: Hamilton defending his position from Alonso. Well done Hamilton, with a pilot like you Who need tyre strategies.

  15. winning is not important, but it´s humiliation … ;)

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