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Raikkonen: I thought we had a much better car...
27 October 2012
Kimi Raikkonen has admitted he was disappointed to only qualify seventh for the Indian Grand Prix.
The Lotus driver had been fifth overall this morning in final practice, however, in Q3 he was unable to match the Red Bulls, McLarens and Ferraris, and ended up 'best of the rest', on a 1 minute 26.236 seconds, 0.379 seconds off P6.
Speaking after the session, the Finn explained that changes to his E20 following FP3 hadn't worked out as planned.
“We changed the car after this morning's session and we were quite confident heading in to qualifying. Unfortunately, we didn't seem to have any grip this afternoon so it was much more difficult than we thought. I'm quite disappointed to be starting from seventh as I thought we had a much better car than that,” he lamented.
Team-mate Romain Grosjean meanwhile was similarly frustrated and he found himself just edged out in Q2. He will start eleventh in the sister car.
“I was expecting better so I'm a little disappointed, however in terms of strategy P11 has one advantage as you're the first car that can choose which tyres it will start the race on and I have a couple of new sets in my pocket for tomorrow," Grosjean remarked.
“I wish I could have got through into Q3 and lacking two hundredths of a second to make it there was frustrating. On my second timed lap I was doing well, but for whatever reason the car snapped on me and I lost time.
"It was difficult to get everything right, but we're looking strong to score some good points tomorrow.”
“It was a disappointing result,” summarised Lotus trackside operations director, Alan Permane. “Kimi had a very good session in the morning and we were looking forward to a strong qualifying. Unfortunately, neither driver felt they had the grip levels they had enjoyed in the morning. Romain reported poor overall grip in all corners, whereas Kimi had issues with the low speed corners - a nervous car on entry and poor traction on exit - which are typical comments made about a car which is lacking in all round grip.
"Qualifying seventh behind two Red Bulls, two McLarens and two Ferraris shows that we have the fourth fastest car here.
"We will do what we can in the race now but we've seen very low tyre degradation and overtaking is difficult due to the circuit layout and DRS setup,” Permane concluded.
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