25 September 2015
F1 Japanese Grand Prix: Raikkonen not playing guessing games over Suzuka form
Kimi Raikkonen refused to be drawn on Ferrari's chances of success in the Japanese Grand Prix after both Friday F1 practice sessions were hit by rain at Suzuka.
Kimi Raikkonen insists that there is no point trying to predict what might happen over the Japanese Grand Prix weekend, particularly with day one remaining wet throughout.
The Finn pushed his Ferrari to the sixth-fastest time in FP2 on Friday afternoon, but had already made his feelings known when asked whether he thought the Scuderia's Singapore performance would translate to the very different confines of Suzuka.
“It hasn't changed since last time, so it applies here but there are different conditions today and probably tomorrow so who knows,” he pointed out, “We'll start tomorrow and see from there. It's pointless us guessing here: we can wait one, two days and see. Hopefully we'll get to be in a good position, but you never know. This year keeps going up and down, [with] changes between the big teams, so we'll have to wait and see."
Third in Singapore was Raikkonen's best result since he chased Lewis Hamilton home in Bahrain at the start of the season, but the Finn has had to watch Ferrari team-mate Sebastian Vettel rack up three wins in that time, and the questions over his own performance show no sign of relenting.
“Hopefully we can win, but that's the aim always,” the 2005 Japanese Grand prix winner sighed, “I wouldn't be here if I didn't believe that. It hasn't been an ideal year, but there's been good things. Obviously, we have to clear up some things from our side to ensure we get results in the end. If it happens this year, then it happens. If not, we try next year again but, obviously, the aim is to be first.
"I don't really want to spent time explaining the [Singapore] issues again. It wasn't ideal for us and, whatever might be the reason, it doesn't need to be discussed here. I don't have the patience for that. We still managed to finish third so obviously it was not a bad weekend, but not the ideal one either. We'll take it but, hopefully, we'll have a bit better feeling this weekend."
Friday's rain-hit sessions, which only allowed a brief respite at the start of FP2, will count for little should the rest of the weekend by dry as forecast. Raikkonen trailed his team-mate by a tenth in the best of the conditions, but insists that no real call can be made on potential until the teams get to run on a dry circuit.
"It was a bit tricky conditions, but we did some running and tried to learn so we will see how the weather turns out tomorrow," he noted, “Obviously not very good weather, so a big shame for everybody. Now we have to wait and see how it is tomorrow. It can be anything, but we will try to make the best of it.
“We haven't lost [the day] - it was raining and it could be raining tomorrow. It is one day out of many and it happened to rain. It will rain some other day again and we try to learn from that every day.”
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