Räikkönen avrebbe dovuto proseguire nel WRC
Mikko Hirvonen pensa che Kimi Räikkönen avrebbe potuto avere successo nel campionato del mondo rally se avesse perseverato. Il finlandese crede che il suo compatriota avrebbe potuto anche diventare campione del mondo col tempo.
“Nel giro di qualche anno, forse sì”, ha dichiarato Hirvonen al canale finlandese MTV3 durante la preparazione del rally di Montecarlo con Citroen, l’ex squadra di Räikkönen. “Ho parlato con gli ingegneri che si occupavano di Kimi e mi hanno detto che lui era veloce quanto i migliori piloti. Il suo punto debole non era il talento al volante ma piuttosto la stesura delle note. Avrebbe dovuto proseguire”.
Si sa poi cos’è accaduto: Räikkönen ha finalmente scelto di tornare in F1 con la Lotus Renault GP.
Mikko non ha potuto poi risparmiare una battuta quando gli hanno chiesto se userà una vecchia DS3 WRC guidata da Räikkönen nel 2011. “Ah sì? Credete ne sia rimasta qualcuna che non abbia distrutto?” ha scherzato il pilota finlandese.
Da Autosprint n. 45 dell’8/11/2011:
Questo martedì, Kimi Räikkönen ha effettuato un test per il prossimo Rally di Gran Bretagna nel Tarn.
Una sola giornata per il finlandese che è stato raggiunto da Luca Pedersoli, campione d’Italia su asfalto quest’anno e che potrebbe ottenere una nuova WRC…
Con un avvenire completamente incerto nei rally, Räikkönen ha effettuato forse le sue ultime prove a bordo di una WRC…
Kimi’s exit caused by fuel leak
Citroen Racing Technologies’ boss Benoit Nogier has confirmed that a fuel leak caused Kimi Raikkonen’s retirement from RallyRACC-Rally de Espana on Friday morning.
Raikkonen, Formula One world champion in 2007, was fighting back from the time lost on the dust-coated opening stage when he stopped on stage three.
“We had a problem with a fuel leak and he had to stop in the stage,” said Nogier. “It was a very, very small leak but we lost a lot of fuel. It was something almost invisible and it was really difficult to find what the problem was.”
Nogier, who said a full analysis of the fuel leak problem would take place in order to establish the precise cause, confirmed Raikkonen’s Citroen DS3 WRC had briefly caught fire although there was little damage as a result of this.
Raikkonen elected not to restart under SupeRally rules this morning, even though his car had been repaired.
“Kimi took the decision to keep the car for the next rally, the last event of the season, which will be very important,” said Nogier. “We prefer not to take any risks to keep the full potential for the next rally.”
[…] “Five cars have been prepared in our workshops for this rally”, explain Benoît Nogier, the man in charge of the Versailles-Satory based team. “In addition to the four race-prepared DS3 WRCs, a fifth was made available for a test session this week.”
Kimi Räikkönen (ICE1 Racing) racked up six consecutives top-10 finishes in the early part of the season, and the Finn is tackling Rally Spain full of ambition: “Kimi’s potential is increasing in leaps and bounds. In Rally France he could have finished in the first five. By tacking advantage of a good starting position on the first day, and with the speed he’s already shown on dry tarmac he could achieve a very good result”.
Kimi Räikkönen opts not to restart the Rally of France for day two
Kimi Raikkonen has joined fellow Citroen DS3 WRC driver Sebastien Loeb on the official retirements list from the Rally of France – the Finn is on his way home to Geneva after his road accident this morning.
Raikkonen was sidelined with suspension damage after he hit the back of Henning Solberg’s Ford Fiesta RS WRC on the way to stage three. The team says the damage could have been repaired, but it was felt there was no point when the penalties would have ruled out any chance of a top result.
Team manager Benoit Nogier said: "It’s over, Kimi has gone [home]. The damage was not so bad, but he preferred to stop. That’s it. This is very disappointing."
Nogier added that Raikkonen’s early pace on the Alsace event, running inside the top 10, was looking positive for the rest of the rally.
"We could have made a good result here," he said. "The times on the first stages were good."
Raikkonen will contest the final two rounds of the World Rally Championship in Spain and Britain as expected.
Kimi Räikkönen says his Rally of France road section shunt was a ‘stupid accident’
Kimi Raikkonen’s Ice 1 Racing team manager Benoit Nogier said the Finn described his exit from the opening day of Rally de France as a "stupid accident."
Raikkonen explained his crash, when the Citroen driver hit the back of Henning Solberg’s Ford on the road section to stage three, when he arrived back in service in Strasbourg earlier today.
Nogier said: "Henning had passed Kimi on the road section. They were both weaving to warm up their tyres, but Kimi had to go back past Henning because he was going to start the stage before him.
"Henning had stopped weaving and was in a straight line to the right side of the road. Kimi thought he had left the space for him to pass him, so he went by. Just as he was passing him, Henning braked hard to try and warm up the brakes."
It was at that point that the front-right corner of Raikkonen’s Citroen made contact with the left-rear of the Solberg Fiesta. The collision broke the suspension on the DS3 and put Raikkonen in a ditch on the left hand side of the road.
"Kimi said Henning got straight out of the car and apologised, saying he hadn’t seen him at all," continued Nogier. "Kimi said it was just a stupid accident, one of those things. He said Henning should get in the car and go drive the stage. It was one of those bizarre accidents."
SS1: 07:13 Raikkonen survives brush with a ditch
Kimi Raikkonen completes SS1 in 5m52.3s, 10.6s adrift of Loeb, having collected some grass during a brief excursion into a ditch: “It was okay. One braking was very slippery and we went off the road a little bit.”
SS3: 09:00 Raikkonen misses SS3 start
Kimi Raikkonen has not finished SS3 and reports form the stage indicate that he did not arrive at the start.
Räikkönen crashes out of Rally France before start of SS3
Kimi Raikkonen has retired from Rally de France after crashing before the start of the third stage this morning.
The Finn had been running in ninth place after the first two stages of the Alsace event, but the Citroen driver is reported to have dropped his DS3 WRC into a ditch while warming his tyres up prior to SS3, the longest stage of the rally.
There has been speculation that Raikkonen was avoiding another competitor when he went off the road. The impact is believed to have damaged the suspension and ended his participation in the event.
The 22-mile Pays d’Ormont test has taken its toll on this year’s Rally de France, with Sebastien Loeb stopping with mechanical trouble and both factory Fords of Mikko Hirvonen and Jari-Matti Latvala going off the road, but making it to the end.
[…] Former Formula One world champion Kimi Raikkonen retired on the road section heading to stage three when a bizarre collision with Henning Solberg forced him into a ditch and retirement. Solberg was able to carry on, albeit with a dent on the left-hand side of his Fiesta. He is 12th overall, one place behind Super 2000 World Rally Championship leader Ott Tanak, who profited when rival Juho Hanninen suffered a puncture on his Skoda Fabia on stage three.