F1 »

Raikkonen: Rally Finland was good fun

2007 F1 World champion Kimi Raikkonen impressed on the Neste Oil Rally Finland last weekend, despite crashing out in the final stage on day two, and the Finn revelled on his WRC debut declaring it 'good fun'.

Raikkonen, who was competing in a Tommi Making-racing run Abarth Grande Punto S2000, began reasonably cautiously but by the end of the opening leg he had upped his pace, setting two 15th best efforts in the final two forest tests.

He finished day one 17th overall and fourth in his class, less than 16 seconds off Janne Tuhino, who at that point was on course for the final place on the Group N podium.

On Saturday the Ferrari F1 man continued to shine and was up to 15th post-SS18 and all set to possibly finish on the Gp.N rostrum.

However the 29.29 kilometre Vaarinmaja stage - the longest of the event - was to be his undoing when he rolled his Abarth Grande Punto S2000, crashing in the same place that caught out Adapta WRT's Mads Ostberg.

Raikkonen and co-driver Kaj Lindstrom, who formerly partnered multiple world rally champion Tommi Makinen, were both uninjured in the incident.

"I saw that it was going to go wide, but unfortunately there were a lot of rocks and we rolled," Raikkonen told the official WRC TV programme.

"I think we wouldn't have finished the rally anyway because we had too many problems with the engine. It was good fun though and nobody got hurt, so it doesn't matter."

Speaking at the end of the opening day, Raikkonen added at that point that he was very happy with his early form.

"I had some problems in the first two special tests [on Friday], but then I found my rhythm and it went well for the rest of the day," he stated. "We were quick second time through. The pace notes are the biggest challenge in this rally because you must have total faith in them.

"[Overall] I am pleased with my performance today. I'm not far behind the best drivers in my class and I'm satisfied with that. I am enjoying this rally so far."

In total Raikkonen set twelve top-twenty stage times from the 18 tests he ended up completing - his best: two 14th quickest efforts in SS17 and SS18 on Saturday, just before he went out - and that was despite a number of technical issues, principally with the engine.



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Kaj Lindstrom (FIN), Fiat Grande Punto S2000
Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Kaj Lindstrom (FIN), Fiat Grande Punto S2000
Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Kaj Lindstrom (FIN), Fiat Grande Punto S2000
Kimi Raikkonen (FIN), Fiat Grande Punto S2000
French Grand Prix at Paul Ricard
Kimi Raikkonen tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
Kimi Raikkonen tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Pirelli 2017 tyre test [Credit: Pirelli]
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, Start of the race, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB12 and Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H and Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race,Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H  leads Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB12

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.


Banana Republic

August 05, 2009 5:09 AM

How nice of Fred to pass judgment on Raikkonen who did not luck into his world championship. News flash Fred if you dont like it turn off the channel when he is on. They were lucky the Ferrari had suck poor reliability that it wasnt farther. Get over Kimi's attitude its always been that way and its not going to change thats why people like him and people like you who can only give him **** about his attitude instead of his ability in a car do. Show some respect for his speed and ability in a rally car.



© 1999 - 2016 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.