Kimi Räikkönen, at the GP of Abu Dhabi 2102. Photo: Wikimedia Commons
The World of 2012 came to Abu Dhabi, the penultimate test of the year, with Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso locked in the fight for the title. The German enjoyed a 13-point advantage over the Spanish. Surprisingly, Kimi Räikkönen was third, and still with chances, albeit remote. The finn, who earlier this year had returned to Formula 1 with team Lotus-Renault, had achieved six podiums, and scored in all tests with the exception of China.
Despite this consistency, a victory was not in the plans. But in the fourth edition of the race in Abu Dhabi, Kimi -that’s not ascended the top step of the podium since the Grand Prix of Belgium 2009 – scored his nineteenth win. Fourth on the grid, behind Lewis Hamilton, Mark Webber and Pastor Maldonado and ahead of Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso, Iceman forged the success in a grand exit that took him to the second position. That became the first to leave Hamilton on lap 20 with problems of fuel pressure.
Was a Great Prize bumpy. Two periods of safety car contributed to the comeback of Sebastian Vettel, penalized for not having enough fuel to return to the pits after Q3, I had taken the output from the pitlane. The then-champion came back up to the third position after overtaking Jenson Button with three laps to go, which minimized the damage compared to Alonso, second in the goal.
Räikkönen it would take little time in return to savor the sweetness of victory. Four months later, also unexpectedly, it was imposed in Australia, the first race of the season 2017, that is until the moment the last of his twenty victories.