Ferrari team principal Maurizio Arrivabene says he is pleased to see Kimi Raikkonen 'really, really fighting' as he recovered ground from his 14th place starting position to finish sixth in the Hungarian Grand Prix.
The Finn was the big casualty in a closely-fought Q2 session in qualifying as drying track conditions left him down on the seventh row of the grid, but an alternative strategy that saw him go long on the first stint would ultimately pay dividends as he recovered ground.
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Eventually clawing his way up to sixth, though Raikkonen's charge was halted by a stubborn Max Verstappen, Arrivabene says the Finn showed why he was offered a new deal for 2017.
“I am very happy because Kimi showed that he is not the last World Champion with Ferrari for nothing and that he deserved his confirmation [new deal]. He was really, really fighting.”
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Arrivabene also supported Raikkonen over his criticism of Verstappen, whom he felt made too many moves to defend position, leaving the Ferrari with a damaged front-wing.
“I have to say, because the rules are just one move, but we all got the impression that we saw two moves and we called Charlie. They said that they were looking carefully at the images and in their opinion there was only one move.”
Ferrari head on to the German Grand Prix with just a single point advantage over Red Bull for second in the constructors' standings.
F1 RESULTS: Hungarian Grand Prix Race Results