Kimi Raikkonen admitted he had enjoyed the opportunity to get back behind the wheel of an F1 car after competing the first day of his two-day run in a Renault R30 in Valencia.

The former title winner completed around 300km of the Spanish circuit at the wheel of the 2010-spec machine as part of the preparations for his return to the sport with Lotus this season.

Prior to his run in the older car, which took part on Pirelli's demonstration tyres, Raikkonen hadn't driven an F1 car since his final outing for Ferrari at the end of 2009.

"It was a good first day! Having not driven a Formula 1 car for two years and obviously with a new team, there is a lot to get used to," he said. "I'm happy because I was pretty quick to get back in the groove. Obviously you get more into the zone with the more laps you complete, as you discover more about the car and the tyres.

"Knowing when to turn, brake, and when to get on the power didn't take long at all. The good thing is that running today gives me something to compare the new car to, so I'm looking forward to it. Hopefully we'll be fast straight away and it's going to be an interesting season."

Raikkonen secured a deal to return to F1 this season having spent the past two years competing with his own team in the World Rally Championship.

Following the test in Valencia, which continues today [Tuesday], Raikkonen will get the chance to sample Lotus' 2012 car for the first time when pre-season testing gets underway next month.


Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register to add your comment