Scuderia Ferrari Formula 1 driver Kimi Raikkonen has not scored the results which he would have deserved according to his performances on the track, says team-mate Sebastian Vettel, as reported by Italian newspaper Tuttosport.
Sebastian Vettel currently leads the Formula One championship after the first four rounds, having managed to win two races and twice finish second, while Kimi Raikkonen scored his first podium of the season in the Russian Grand Prix and for the moment is 37 points adrift in the Formula 1 Driver Standings.
Kimi finished the Australian GP in fourth place and only fifth in China, prompting Ferrari president Sergio Marchionne to state that he wanted talks about the Finn’s current form. Raikkonen then recovered from a bad start to finish fourth in Bahrain and ahead of the Russian Grand Prix said “everything is fine” regarding his relationship with Sergio Marchionne before delivering his best weekend of the season where he finished third, just over 11 seconds behind Sebastian Vettel.
Four-time F1 champion Sebastian Vettel was sympathetic to Raikkonen’s early struggles and defened his team-mate, as he believes Kimi’s fortunes will improve as the season continues: “He probably didn’t have the races he deserved. In Bahrain obviously the start, the first lap cost him a lot, otherwise I’m sure he would’ve been on the podium. I see exactly what happens and things didn’t go 100% in his direction so far but I don’t think there’s any doubt inside the paddock that he’s one of the most talented drivers we have. I don’t think anybody else could go to WRC and perform at the level he did, just come back and be right up to the pace again. I don’t think there’s anyone who doubts his skills or his talent but, as I said, you need to have a lot of things coming your way. If you look back last year, I had some races where things didn’t go my way – it’s up and down but usually throughout the season it sort of equals out.”
Kimi Raikkonen believes things can get better if Scuderia Ferrari improves the “small details” given the close margins between the Maranello team and rivals Mercedes: “I think I have had a little bit of a rough start to the season. It’s far from ideal but the weekend [in Sochi] has been a step forward. We have been more happy with how things have been running but we still only finished third. We keep trying and keep improving and I’m sure we’ll get there, but the small details have to be exactly there and then you will get the first place. The four or five of us are very close most of the time, so it’s the small differences that make a big difference in the end.” – the Finnish driver said, as reported by Tuttosport.