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Raikkonen holds his hands up
5 October 2013
Kimi Raikkonen admitted he was to blame after only qualifying tenth for the Korean Grand Prix at the Yeongam circuit.
The Lotus man had looked set to secure a solid grid slot when he was quick through the first two sectors of his Q3 lap, only to then lose time in the final sector – leaving him bottom of those to make it into the final phase of qualifying.
The Finn will therefore start from ninth thanks to Mark Webber's ten place grid penalty but admitted he could only blame himself for not qualifying higher up the order.
“I made a mistake on my only set of new tyres in the final qualifying session so my lap wasn't fast enough for a better position, which eventually meant I ended up tenth and will start from ninth position tomorrow,” he said.
“We've had a bit of understeer in the car so I've struggled a little all weekend. If you look at the long run pace yesterday we should have a stronger race, but obviously we have to see how the weather turns out. We hope to do better tomorrow.”
Trackside operations director Alan Permane admitted that the result had left Raikkonen with work to do on race day but said the Korean circuit was one where the Ferrari-bound man would be able to work his way forwards.
“Kimi didn't have the luxury of two runs in the final session, and unfortunately his crucial lap didn't quite come off as planned,” he said. “As ever, he will be a formidable force in the race so we've got good expectations for tomorrow.
“It's a circuit where you can overtake with DRS; not the easiest, but certainly not the hardest. That said, tomorrow's race will be about tyres – in particular the front right which has a very hard time – so managing the wear and performance will be an important consideration.”
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