GP Japan: Räikkönen, surprised with his car after his best qualifying of the year


The classification of the Grand Prix of Japan has brought a few differences between teams much smaller than expected and, above all, to a Ferrari surprisingly competitive. After showing an inherent lack of pace relative to Red Bull in Sepang, the Italian team has responded big time with a good performance, planting his two cars ahead of Milton Keynes.

Interestingly, its best exponent in Q3 was not Vettel, if not Kimi Räikkönen. The Finnish driver was the only one outside of Mercedes in download of 1:31 in the session short, and his 1:30.949 was only three tenths of the pole of Nico Rosberg, so that the finn will be out for the fourth time this year from third place, his best grid position this year.

In statements to the media, Räikkönen was unable to hide his surprise at the good times of the SF16-H, since the car has not been modified substantially since the appointment of the last week in Sepang:

“it Is basically the same car that we took last week. I don’t think many people have had much difference. I’m positively surprised by how well behaved the car, so rapid that it has been and for how close and competitive we have been with regard to Mercedes. It has been difficult to find the right balance, but it has been really good so far”.

Be third-party is not exactly what we want, but we are very close to. That is what we have now, and it is a pity that Seb has a penalty, because the team has had a very strong today. Obviously, we’re happy, but we still have work to do to improve things and there you have another good day tomorrow.”

softer, less understeer

From several media, points the greater number of sets of soft tyres that Ferrari takes this weekend (9th, up to three more teams like Mercedes) as the main factor to extract performance from the tyre, to be able to use more games of the same in free.

Asked about it, Räikkönen considered that it had been helpful at the time of correct the settings of the configuration, such as excessive understeer that had your car on the day of Friday.

“do no harm, that’s for sure. it Is easier to have multiple games of the same tire, to be able to adjust the settings. In classification, you can do too, whether they’re well or not. We have been suffering a bit of understeer all weekend, and even in qualifying he was holding back a bit in the first sector, but today has been better, and at the end we went a little faster. They are very small details that must come together, and more or less what we have achieved”.

“The car has behaved quite well, we have some speed, and it’s not going to suddenly disappear. At least, we will try to do the same tomorrow, if not better. We’re usually a little better in the race, but will depend on the conditions”