The start of the 2017 Formula One season has not been ideal for Kimi Raikkonen, as the Scuderia Ferrari driver did not manage to score a podium finish in the first two races of the championship, the Australian Grand Prix and the Chinese Grand Prix, despite the fact that his teammate won the opening round and managed a strong second place at the Shanghai International Circuit last Sunday.
Truth be told, a very poor strategy call by Scuderia Ferrari did not help Kimi during the last race, as the Finnish driver asked to pit several times due to tyre degradation, the former Formula 1 champion’s performance has not been at its best so far, prompting Ferrari president Sergio Marchionne to ask Maurizio Arrivabene to engage with Kimi and discuss the underlining problem. Raikkonen is confident that part of his issues result from wrong set-up decisions which when corrected will set him back on the right track:
“It’s always painful when you don’t have a good result. I have been in the sport long enough and it’s not very often that it’s all smiling and happy. It’s a part of the job. It’s frustrating at times, but I know what we need and we have a very clear picture of what we want to do.” – Raikkonen said, as reported by Italian national sports newspaper Corriere dello Sport.
The fact that the two practice sessions on Friday did not provide the usual opportunity for drivers to evaluate the track conditions and tyres certainly didn’t help Raikkonen’s workload, although it could be argued that Sebastian Vettel was equally in the same situation: “The not running on Friday was a bit of bad timing, but that’s how it goes. I’m confident that we can get where we want to be. We need to start scoring bigger points to stay in the fight, but it’s going to be a long year. It’s disappointing to finish fifth, but I’ll take those points and hopefully be in a better position next race.” – Kimi concluded, ahead of the 2017 Bahrain GP, which will take place next weekend at the Bahrain International Circuit in Sakhir, the desert area located in the Southern Governorate of the Kingdom of Bahrain.