Raikkonen: Lotus will cut gap to Red Bull in qualifying

2013 Malaysian Grand Prix

Kimi Raikkonen, Lotus, Sepang, 2013Kimi Raikkonen says he expects Lotus will be closer to Red Bull in qualifying this weekend.

The RB9s locked out the front row of the grid in Melbourne while Raikkonen shared row four with team mate Romain Grosjean.

During the press conference for the Malaysian Grand Prix Raikkonen said the unusual circumstances of last week’s qualifying exaggerated the difference between Lotus and Red Bull.

“I wouldn’t say that the qualifying was very normal situation with all the weather and it got delayed and all that stuff,” he said.

“With normal dry conditions I’m pretty sure we are more close, I hope at least. We’ll wait and see once we get the normal qualifying done, I am sure we are not a second behind or whatever it was, 1.4 seconds behind.”

Raikkonen added he hopes his car will show the same strong performance in the hot conditions seen in Malaysia as it did last year: “Last year we were pretty good when it was hot, and then actually it was better for us.

“But obviously we haven’t run in this king of condition and the winter was very cold so I have no idea. But if it’s anything what it was last year it should be OK but we have to wait and see how it goes.”

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21 comments on Raikkonen: Lotus will cut gap to Red Bull in qualifying

  1. timi (@timi) said on 21st March 2013, 9:17

    The Lotus may well be able to qualify with a lessened gulf between themselves and the Red Bulls, however if they need a dry weekend for that to happen, there’s no way it’s happening this weekend.

    It’s predicted to be rain all three days, with thundery showers during qualifying, and also the race.

  2. Hoping for a dry, constant weather session to see where everyone lands. Melbourne was frustrating in qualifying because it was more about the conditions, which were always changing.

    Red Bull look quick on one lap but have tire wear issues in race. Mercedes same issue but maybe not as quick. Keen to see how the Lotus performes over a quick lap because we know its kind to its tires in the race.

  3. Candice said on 21st March 2013, 9:21

    Keep the faith…LOL

  4. Force Maikel (@force-maikel) said on 21st March 2013, 9:27

    Malaysia; the race were running out of wet weather tyres is an actual concern.

  5. mildertduck (@mildertduck) said on 21st March 2013, 10:05

    I thought the wet tire compound was designed to be so durable that you *could* do a whole race on them if needed…

    • Force Maikel (@force-maikel) said on 21st March 2013, 10:52

      Yes but they only have 3 sets per type and *if* they have to use them in practice and qualifying that window just got a whole lot smaller :-)

  6. It don’t see the point in wishing for a dry race, as I read in a lot of comments concerning the Malaysian GP. Maybe the teams will be annoyed because they won’t be able to gather valuable data, but as a fan of unpredictable races I look forward to a bit of rain to shake things up! The longer the teams struggle to get there car optimised, the longer we will be able to enjoy unpredictable racing! And I just love me some good old fashioned unpredictability!

    • Red Andy (@red-andy) said on 21st March 2013, 10:59

      I also love the unpredictability of wet races, but Charlie Whiting doesn’t allow them anymore.

      As the farcical qualifying session in Melbourne showed, anything more than a few drops of rain on the circuit and the red flags will come out. As Sepang is a permanent circuit with better drainage, the tolerance should be slightly higher, but expect many delays if it rains (as well as the now apparently mandatory safety car start). The days of uninterrupted wet races, even those as recent as Silverstone 2008, are sadly behind us.

      • Tyler (@tdog) said on 21st March 2013, 11:13

        I was sitting in the rain on Saturday afternoon when Q1 was run. I can assure you it was more than “a few drops”.

      • I also love the unpredictability of wet races

        They could just hose down the track on days it isn’t raining.

        If you like unpredictability you should try the lotto, All sports are inherently predictable.

        • beneboy (@beneboy) said on 21st March 2013, 20:36

          All sports are inherently predictable.

          I work for a bookmakers and if that were true we’d go out of business very quickly, there is always form in any sport and certain things can be predicted with varying levels of accuracy but sports are inherently unpredictable due to the number of variables involved.

  7. accidental mick (@accidental-mick) said on 21st March 2013, 12:06

    Has anyone else noticed that Kimi seems more relaxed and talkative (for him) these days. He has stopped giving one word answers ecept for truly stupid questions and I don’t bame him for that.

  8. “But obviously we haven’t run in this king of condition ”

    surely that’s ” kind ” of condition above . You can remove this comment after you change it if you like …

  9. It’ll be an awesome race, due to weather.

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