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Raikkonen battles back to points finish

Kimi Raikkonen suffers a flash fire in the Interlagos pit lane but bounces back to secure vital points for Ferrari in Brazil
Kimi Raikkonen bounced back from a dramatic flash fire in the Interlagos pitlane to secure vital points for Ferrari in the Brazilian GP as the Scuderia retained hope of securing third in the constructors' championship.

Raikkonen made a storming start to the race to jump up to third at the first corner but then touched the rear of Mark Webber's Red Bull going into turn four and damaged the front wing on his F60.

Having recovered to the pits, Raikkonen then found himself involved in a dramatic fire when the McLaren of Heikki Kovalainen – who had pitted following a spin at turn two – pulled away from its pit box with the fuel hose still attached.

Raikkonen was covered with fuel from the McLaren hose which briefly caught fire, although the flames were quickly extinguished and the Finn was able to continue despite admitting that his eyes had been burning following the incident.

Running on a different strategy to many of the cars around him as a result of the early stop, Raikkonen was able to battle back up to sixth place although he admitted that he had hoped for more.

“What happened on the first lap ruined my race,” he said. “First I was hit at the first corner, then when trying to pass Webber, I was hit and lost the front wing. At the pit stop, I ended up with some drops of petrol in my eye, from the fuel line stuck on Kovalainen's car and then I was engulfed in flames and blinded: I was going to stop, but luckily the flames soon went out. Even now, my eyes are still burning, but I'm alright.

“After the restart, I could only try and use the strategy to move up the order and at least I brought home a few points. I am disappointed because today I'm sure we could have made it to the podium. There is one race to go: let's see what we can do in Abu Dhabi to get back that third place [from McLaren].”

McLaren team boss Martin Whitmarsh insisted Kovalainen was blameless for the pitlane incident, which occurred when the lollypop holding the car was lifted early, and promised that a full investigation into the incident would take place.

“Heikki would have scored points, had he not been delayed by a pitlane incident in which he was blameless, caused by human error,” he said. “Fortunately, no-one was hurt in the incident and we were quickly able to effect the back-up rig ahead of both drivers' second stops.

“Once we get all the video footage back to Woking, we'll perform a forensic investigation, in 'slow time', to establish exactly what happened. Until we've done that, it's impossible for us to comment on the incident with any precision.”



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Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Ferrari F60, Turkish F1, Istanbul Park, 5th-7th June, 2009
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Kimi Raikkonen tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
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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
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27.11.2016 - Race, Jenson Button (GBR)  McLaren Honda MP4-31
27.11.2016 - Race, Jenson Button (GBR)  McLaren Honda MP4-31
27.11.2016 - Race, Marcus Ericsson (SUE) Sauber C34 and Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren Honda MP4-31
27.11.2016 - Race, Jolyon Palmer (GBR) Renault Sport F1 Team RS16 and Jenson Button (GBR)  McLaren Honda MP4-31
27.11.2016 - Race,Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H  leads Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB12
27.11.2016 - Race, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB12 leads Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H

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Iceman - Unregistered

October 18, 2009 10:42 PM

MJR, what is wrong with you. First of all, Raikkonen always talks straight up, he doesn't embellish anything ever. Second, you weren't there. You can't tell from a video replay on trule how bad it was. If anyone is wondering about how Petrol was in his eyes, well unless you want to suffocate your drivers, a helmet and visor aren't going to be airtight.



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