Current team principal of the Scuderia Ferrari Formula One team Maurizio Arrivabene has praised Finnish driver Kimi Raikkonen for his part in the team’s 2017 Hungarian Grand Prix victory last Sunday, as the Italian side managed to score its second one-two finish of the 2017 Formula One championship, after several races during which the Maranello team seemed to fall behind rivals Mercedes.
Kimi Raikkonen acted as rear gunner for teammate Sebastian Vettel, who went on to claim his seventh win for Ferrari in his 50th start for the team, despite the fact that the German driver struggled with a steering issue throughout many stages of the race which was held at the Hungaroring track. Kimi felt he had a good chance of emerging ahead of Sebastian Vettel if he had stayed out for another lap before his one and only pit stop, given the fact that he was much quicker than his teammate at that moment and also in the second part of the Grand Prix.
The Finn claimed he had been “put under massive pressure for no reason” as the Mercedes duo of Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas closed in behind in the latter stages of the race, but Kimi pulled clear to follow Sebastian across the line in second place during a tense finale. Maurizio Arrivabene admits Kimi Raikkonen demonstrated he is a team player in Hungary, a performance which may very well earn him a place with the Maranello team for the 2018 Formula 1 season: “Seb drove a magnificent race, managing to keep the lead despite the problem with the steering wheel. He was helped by a great performance from Kimi who demonstrated, not only that he is a champion, but also that he is a true team player.” – Scuderia Ferrari’s team principal said, as reported by the Italian media.
“A great race and a result obtained in far from easy circumstances. Once again it demonstrated the strength of character at Ferrari. Congratulations to the guys here and back in Maranello, working together in what is the mark of a great team.” – Maurizio Arrivabene concluded.
The win at the Hungaroring circuit marked Scuderia Ferrari’s first victory since the 2017 Monaco Grand Prix, which took place in May, five races ago, and helped the Italian outfit cut Mercedes’ lead in the Formula One constructors’ world championship to just 39 points, ahead of the 2017 Belgian Grand Prix.