Kimi Raikkonen finished fourth in the 2017 Bahrain Grand Prix and admitted that he must work on fine-tuning some of the “small things” in his performance in order to improve after again missing out on the podium, this time in Sakhir.
The Finnish driver had a poor start, which cost him a lot of time as he had to fight his way back after he found himself behind the Williams of Felipe Massa. Kimi managed to recover and eventually finished fourth, but the expectations are much higher from him, given the fact that his Ferrari teammate Sebastian Vettel scored two wins in the first three rounds of the Formula One season. Raikkonen has not managed a podium finish so far, but insists he is happy overall with Scuderia Ferrari’s start to the championship:
“Looking at the big picture we are pretty much where we want to be, we need to fine-tune a few things and also putting the lap together in qualifying. I don’t think they are big things but, obviously, they have cost us a lot of time. First of all it is taking too long, in my view, but there’s no point in complaining, this is my job. I think we are more or less there but have to do even better, as always, we always try to improve. And if you are running at the front the race becomes an awful lot easier. To be honest it has taken way too long! It wasn’t possible to get it right straight away and we still haven’t, for a lot of reasons. It didn’t help that in China we didn’t drive in the first day of practice, because when you’re going through some issues you want to get track time. I’m pretty happy with the car now and yesterday, on one lap pace, it was just small things.” – Kimi Raikkonen explained at the end of the race on Sunday, as quoted by Tuttosport.
Kimi knows that his poor start cost him severely in Bahrain, but at the same time luck wasn’t on his side, as he had to pass Felipe Massa once again due to the fact that the Safety Car came out immediately after his pit stop and offered the Brazilian the opportunity to recover time: “The car was working pretty nicely and, to be honest, I expected that. It was just on the one-lap pace that I couldn’t get what I wanted out of it. I have no complains on that side. But I had a bad start and awful first corners, because of that. Obviously after that I tried to catch up and got reasonably quick past Massa, even though that cost me sometime. Then, obviously I was a bit unlucky with the Safety Car when it came to the first pit stop, lost the position to Massa and had to try and get past him again. At that point, obviously, I was a bit behind. In a way, a lot of good things happened but the end result is still disappointing, at least in my books.” – the Scuderia Ferrari driver concluded.