Maranello, 23 August – After a one month break from racing, Formula 1 is back in action with the Belgian Grand Prix at the Spa-Francorchamps circuit, which is so popular with drivers and race fans alike. Spa has undergone numerous changes from the 14 kilometre track used for the first race back in 1924, to the current 7.004 km, which has resulted in a reduction in the top speeds seen on some sections in the past. However, it still has a special attraction and, as well as being the longest circuit on the calendar, it is still today’s most technical track. Part of this is down to the uncertain nature of the weather, which can even change from one section of track to another. Therefore, the Belgian round is major test bench for cars and drivers, as Formula 1 rounds the mid-point marker and tackles this the thirteenth round of the season.
“It’s an old, traditional circuit, with up and down hills.” – says Kimi on the subject of the Belgian track. “ That’s what is different, more than other circuits, even just the place itself in the middle of nowhere. They changed lightly the last chicane in the past years, but I enjoy it. Conditions can be tricky sometimes, but it’s usually good for overtaking and that’s nice for drivers and spectators. On TV it’s hard to say, but when you’re there you can see it’s quite steep.”
From Sauber to Ferrari – Kimi Raikkonen on F1’s evolution
Not only is he one of the most popular drivers on the grid and an F1 world champion, Kimi Raikkonen is also the eighth most experienced driver in history in terms of race starts. In that time, Raikkonen has raced V10s, V8s, tried his hand at rallying and is now trying to help Ferrari return to the front during the highly technological V6 era.
So what have been the big differences during his time in F1? And where are the big gains made which Raikkonen hopes will eventually see the Scuderia fighting for championships again in the near future? After signing a new contract at Ferrari, the Finn sat down with F1i to reminisce.
The Sauber and McLaren years
Raikkonen first drove an F1 car at Mugello in late 2000 as Sauber evaluated the quick youngster who had impressed during his debut year of Formula Renault. Then just 20 years old, Raikkonen admits he needed a day to adapt to grand prix machinery.
“I didn’t really have much idea because obviously I had never seen the car in real life – OK I’d seen them but not at the racetrack – apart from the day I went there and it was hard to know what to expect,” Raikkonen recalls. “I did Formula Renault, I did one test in Formula 3, OK it’s a bit faster than Formula Renault but not so much. The first test I did at Mugello, I was at the circuit earlier that year with Formula Renault but it’s a slightly different story with the F1 car!
“I think I went into it very open-minded because I didn’t really know what to expect so I just wanted to see how it is. Obviously it was a bit tricky because the conditioning for F1, my neck couldn’t handle it – any other circuit would have been a lot easier – so I could do maybe three laps and then I would box and wait. Obviously at that time there was no power steering in the car so that was a bit hard.
“I didn’t feel that it was so difficult to drive, it was just more the speed, to get used to the speed. Everything happens much faster and obviously it takes a while to get used to how hard you can brake. I would say the first day was a bit tricky because of that, just because everything happens so quickly, but then already after the first night it was a lot like everything slowed down and got more normal like you would drive a Formula Renault. It just slows down and it’s so much easier. It was an amazing feeling.”
The move to McLaren came about just a year later, with Raikkonen having impressed in his debut F1 season. You’d think the change to a front-running car was a noticeable one for a young driver, but the Finn says his first F1 car was still a competitive chassis.
“In a way yes, but I think we had a pretty good car at Sauber. It wasn’t like a completely bad car and we finished fourth in the championship so it was not a bad car at all. They did the best with their budget. McLaren is how it comes, a big team and so many people, it used to be in their old factory and not where they are now. English and Swiss teams have slightly different ways of working to achieve the same results.
“Car-wise every car is different, but I think we changed to Michelins as well at that time so I think that was the bigger difference to try and learn the tyres from Michelin. So the car was hard to compare really. It’s still a top, top team comparing with Sauber, but it was like you’ve jumped from one year to another year, it wasn’t like a completely new thing.
“So it was exciting, nice and new but I didn’t really find it so hard. There was always a lot more help from the team because they have more people and more money to use so in a way things got easier because of that. And then with experience it was also quite a lot different.”
Sat in the Shell track lab in the Ferrari trucks at Silverstone, the surroundings highlight just how much more support front-running teams can get in F1 thanks to close partnerships. Raikkonen says those sort of details stepping up from Sauber to McLaren are what start to make a big difference.
“You have a lot more resource for the team to develop the car, engine, fuel, oil, everything. More so electronics because it was a big part of that time [in the early 2000s]. In Sauber we got the power steering in Monza I think and obviously it was quite a nice thing, but all the small details that can make a lot of lap time – the diff, traction control and stuff – even then we had all the gearboxes that you could have, but the upshifts and downshifts, if you have more people you can put into those things it can make up a lot of lap time.
“So in that way it was also easier because there was not the knowledge and not enough people to do those things [in smaller teams]. It was just more people but they are trying to achieve the same result in two different companies. So McLaren took me in very easily and I felt straight away good. I had very good engineers there and it was just a new challenge.”
A first switch to Ferrari
Still searching for the drivers’ championship, Raikkonen moved to Maranello in 2007 to replace the outgoing Michael Schumacher. They were huge shoes to fill, but the first season brought the success Raikkonen had been searching for. So was that year’s Ferrari F2007 the best car he has driven in F1, or is that too simplistic given his title victory?
“Again the big difference was to change tyres,” Raikkonen explains. “To go from using Michelins for many years and then go back to Bridgestone; and it wasn’t the Bridgestone that it used to be before, it was completely different because everybody had the same tyres. So it was nowhere near as good or as special tyres as when there were two manufacturers fighting against each other. That made a big difference and also how you can drive and how the tyres work. So if you could have had the same tyres I don’t think it would have been so tricky, because it was not easy.
“Obviously between all of the cars I have driven, comparing the Ferrari it has always been harder to get it working, it takes more time to get it how you want. Once you get it then it’s fine, but it’s different. In those years when the tyres changed and went backwards – when I jumped to Michelin there was more grip and they made better tyres and kept improving – so it was a bit going the opposite way.
“Again a different country and different people, but I really enjoyed it. I was many years with McLaren and once I came to Ferrari I had a contract knowing I was going there for a long, long time and it was nice. You dream – or maybe you don’t dream – but Ferrari’s Ferrari, you know? And the other teams, they are not Ferrari. I don’t care how much they have won and all that.”
The season itself was a dramatic one, which Raikkonen admits was far from easy even if it resulted in championship success at the final round in Brazil.
“Obviously I struggled a bit in the beginning during testing, finding a lot of different ways of doing similar things. Then we found our way, then we had some struggles but we managed to turn everything around and make a good season out of it, but it wasn’t easy in any way. We started well, maybe too well, because then it went back to normal and we knew we were not where we wanted to be at the start. We hung in there, we had some issues but we came back very strong but it was an amazing year.
“You always wish it could be more smooth sailing because it was a lot of up and down but we managed to do it in the end and we won more races than the other guys and had more points. I didn’t expect to win the championship straight away, especially with Ferrari, and it hasn’t been easy at any point but I think we’re getting back to where we feel that it’s going in the right direction and it has been going well for a couple of years. I’m sure we can get back to where Ferrari used to be and where we should be.”
A break and a return with Lotus
Having already enjoyed nine consecutive seasons in F1, Raikkonen took a break and went to compete in other motorsport categories – mainly rallying – for two years. He had only experienced one year of new aero regulations when he left, and in a less competitive Ferrari than he had been used to.
Returning to F1 two years before the V6 turbo engines were introduced, Raikkonen had to adapt to another new team in the form of Lotus, and a new tyre manufacturer in Pirelli. It’s a period he feels improved him as a driver, as he had to learn additional skills on top of his raw driving talent.
“Obviously I had my doubts because I hadn’t driven for a few years in F1 but I also knew more or less how it’s going to be,” Raikkonen says of his return to the sport. “Every year there are rule changes, this and that, tyres change, but I was pretty sure that as long as the front is somewhere there with the car we’ll be just fine with it.
“When I drove a two-year old car – the first Lotus – with the demo tyres in Valencia it felt good straight away. There were some issues we had to fix with the steering and stuff, some minor details, but it felt very normal from the first lap. So I think it was a good place to start. In Valencia I haven’t done too many laps in my life because it’s a short circuit and not the fastest circuit but after ten laps it felt very normal and I knew it would be just fine.
“Then there is a question mark over how is that year’s car comparing to the others, but when I came back I didn’t have many worries. OK you always have something in your mind about how it’s going to be but I would never have signed a contract if I didn’t think that it would be fine. One big benefit that I felt was that I was driving all the time, I was racing and in the rally – whatever people say – it teaches you a lot. Even when I did rallies in 2009 with Ferrari I felt that it was only helpful.
“Obviously there are dangers and stuff like this but you can get hurt anywhere so I think it teaches you a lot because you have to be so precise and concentration has to be even higher because you have to listen all the time. It’s not just listening but driving too, so you have to mix a few things and until that gets completely normal to the point you’re not thinking about it you will never be fast enough.
“I could be as fast as the others on test roads because you know it and it’s not an issue. But then to do it from the notes – and you have to build the notes up – I felt that it teaches you a lot. And it helps for sure to be driving because it’s a very hard sport, so that’s why if I was not doing anything for two years for sure it would take time but I felt like it was not such a big deal.”
Ferrari comes calling again as V6s arrive
At the start of the new power unit era, Raikkonen returned to Ferrari for a second time. While the team is familiar, the regulations and the sport itself is very different from the last time at Maranello.
Nowadays, it is not just new front wings or engine updates which help increase the car’s competitiveness, with Shell providing Ferrari with 25% of its overall performance gain in 2015 through fuel and oil. Guy Lovett, Shell’s Innovation Manager for motorsport, works out of the track lab where Raikkonen is sat, and explains the improvements all come within very strict regulations.
“In Formula 1 the fuel is really tightly regulated, which is a good thing because it means that the fuel we’re using here for Ferrari in Formula 1 is very, very similar to the fuel you can buy out in a gas station,” Lovett says. “It’s 99% the same. For Shell that is absolutely imperative because all the technology and all the innovation that we yield from working in Formula 1 and motorsport we can then transfer to our road-going products. That is of fundamental importance to us.
“Nevertheless, the regulations do allow for a degree of innovation, which again is important to us to be able to trial new concepts, new technologies and new additives here in Formula 1 in quite controlled yet incredibly extreme conditions.
“Right now there are no limits to the number of formulations you can bring and there’s very little regulation governing the oils. There is a bit on fuel but still there is enough scope for us to innovate. Fuel and oil have always been relatively unconstrained in a good way to push forward development, where engine regulations have been somewhat more fixed in the past. So, looking at the V8 era, again there were very little regulations governing fuel and oil whereas the engines were pretty much fixed towards the end of the V8 time.
“It’s opened up a lot more from an engine perspective with the V6, it’s starting to be more prescribed. Next year is going to get a little bit more interesting, a little bit freer but it will be the same for us and that’s what we want. We’re here to innovate and develop and learn. Our mandates are to help Ferrari win and transfer technology from track to road. Kind of simple in that respect!”
When Raikkonen jumps in the car, he admits the performance gains are difficult to notice, but that again is a product of the evolution in F1 as teams and suppliers rarely get the chance to do back-to-back comparisons of upgrades.
“It’s hard to feel the difference,” Raikkonen says. “In the past it was much easier when we were testing between races because you could do one run with this fuel and then change it for the next run so you can really feel it or maybe or not. Obviously if it’s just one horsepower or two then you will probably never feel it because you can have one lap with the wind blowing one way and then the other on the next lap!
“But you could often feel it, whereas now it’s either one race weekend or another, different places, different wing levels, often different conditions, so there’s so many variables that it has to be a big, big change on anything that we bring to the car to really pinpoint ‘OK, yes I can feel it’, because we don’t do that kind of testing. Like when we used to do tyre testing we would do one run and then do the next run with a different tyre so you could get a good idea of things.
“Now it’s more like we trust the numbers, that’s why we have all these things [in the lab]. Obviously Shell has been a long partnership with Ferrari and even when I was with them in 2007 and 2008 and 2009, in 07 we made big, big gains in fuel and oil and lots of horsepower. So I knew how it works, and obviously now with the new rules and everything it is a big benefit to have this relationship because obviously certain years you get close to the maximum you can achieve under those rules. Now everything has been mixed up with new rules, you again have more opportunities to make a big difference. So for sure we get a lot of help from Shell.”
Having been through so much in his career already and having to adapt to new ways of working, does Raikkonen find the current formula in F1 enjoyable? Put simply: “Yeah.
“When it came in in 2014 everything was new and probably not at the level we wanted. OK, some teams were at the level they wanted, but for sure we were not happy with where we were. Drivability was also depending on how good your car is or the grip on the circuit or conditions, it wasn’t always easy [to judge] because it made it quite tricky. But now after a few years everything has improved so much.
“Driving-wise the sound is different but the driving itself hasn’t changed. You drive the same way, OK you have fuel saving but in the past you had brake saving or something, so it’s the same thing just affecting different things. So I wouldn’t say there’s an awful lot different apart from the sound and I guess a certain feeling around you, but for me it’s good already again that it’s normal now.”
Lewis Hamilton stretches Formula 1 lead with German Grand Prix win
Lewis Hamilton extended his championship lead before Formula 1’s summer break with a commanding victory in the German Grand Prix at Hockenheim.
The reigning world champion benefited from polesitter and Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg’s poor start to take the lead into Turn 1 and controlled the race from there.
It was Hamilton’s sixth win in seven races, putting him 19 points clear of Rosberg with nine grands prix remaining.
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo clinched second, 6.9 seconds behind, with team-mate Max Verstappen completing the podium in third.
Rosberg bogged down at the start, dropping to fourth as Verstappen went round the outside of Ricciardo through Turn 1 to take second behind clear leader Hamilton.
At the first round of stops, Mercedes and Red Bull split strategies, with Rosberg and Verstappen taking the super-softs and Hamilton and Ricciardo the softs – though all the leaders ultimately ended up on three-stop plans.
Verstappen struggled with that rubber, allowing Rosberg to close the gap and then pit early to try the undercut.
Red Bull responded by bringing the Dutchman in early too and he rejoined ahead but Rosberg got in the slipstream on the run down to the hairpin.
Rosberg dived down the inside, with Verstappen moving in the braking zone before then giving him some room.
Rosberg ran deep into the corner, pushing Verstappen wide and then off track. Following an investigation, the Mercedes driver was handed a five-second time penalty to take at his final pitstop.
Hamilton and Ricciardo ran longer before their second stops, and went to super-softs whereas Verstappen and Rosberg had gone for softs.
That helped Ricciardo to close on and pass Verstappen, and when he took more super-softs at the last stops while Hamilton reverted to softs he mounted a charge towards the lead.
Hamilton had enough in hand, though, raising his pace when required to stay clear of Ricciardo and win again.
Rosberg appeared to be held for longer than five seconds for his penalty at his final stop and rejoined fourth, losing all hope of rescuing a podium.
Ferrari was largely anonymous with Sebastian Vettel fifth, 32.5s adrift at the chequered flag and team-mate Kimi Raikkonen 4.4s further back after they swapped positions at the start.
It meant Ferrari dropped behind Red Bull, which scored its first double podium since Hungary 2015, to third in the constructors’ championship, 14 points adrift.
Nico Hulkenberg was seventh ahead of Jenson Button with Valtteri Bottas ending up ninth after a falling behind both during a long final stint on the soft tyre.
Sergio Perez snatched 10th from Fernando Alonso with three laps to go, and got within 1.5s of Bottas at the flag.
Felipe Massa and Felipe Nasr were the only two retirements, with the Williams driver struggling after being hit by Jolyon Palmer at Turn 6 on the first lap, then pulling into the garage mid-race.
RESULTS – 67 LAPS:
|2||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||6.996s|
|3||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||13.413s|
|7||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m10.049s|
|8||Jenson Button||McLaren/Honda||1 Lap|
|9||Valtteri Bottas||Williams/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|10||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|11||Esteban Gutierrez||Haas/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|12||Fernando Alonso||McLaren/Honda||1 Lap|
|13||Romain Grosjean||Haas/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|14||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|15||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|16||Kevin Magnussen||Renault||1 Lap|
|17||Pascal Wehrlein||Manor/Mercedes||2 Laps|
|18||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber/Ferrari||2 Laps|
|19||Jolyon Palmer||Renault||2 Laps|
|20||Rio Haryanto||Manor/Mercedes||2 Laps|
|–||Felipe Nasr||Sauber/Ferrari||Power Unit|
F1 German GP: Rosberg leads Mercedes team-mate Hamilton in FP2
Nico Rosberg set the pace in second free practice for the German Grand Prix, outpacing Mercedes Formula 1 team-mate Lewis Hamilton by four-tenths of a second.
The home hero had topped the morning session, but initially lagged behind Hamilton on the first runs using the soft Pirelli rubber by four-tenths.
But when the duo then bolted on the super-soft Pirellis, reckoned to be around 1.2 seconds faster than the softs, Rosberg took the upper hand.
First Force India driver Nico Hulkenberg and then Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen hit the top after doing their first super-soft laps, before the two Mercedes drivers.
But Rosberg had his first flier just after the 30-minute mark, setting a time of 1m15.614s to take top spot.
Hamilton then completed his lap, but was slower in all three sectors and ended up 0.394s slower after a slightly ragged effort.
Initially, Red Bull pairing Max Verstappen and Daniel Riccairdo were best of the rest after relegating Raikkonen.
But then Sebastian Vettel, who had a longer break between his runs, finally set his super-soft time just before the 45-minute mark to take second place, six-tenths off Rosberg.
Verstappen and Ricciardo ended up fifth and sixth, with the latter earning criticism from Hamilton late in the session for jinking into the pit exit while passing a slow Manor.
That led to Hamilton moving to the left and complaining over the radio.
Hulkenberg was eventually shuffled down to seventh ahead of Jenson Button, who only completed 16 laps and missed the second half of the session.
Both Button and McLaren-Honda team-mate Fernando Alonso looked to have the potential to go quicker, but ended up slotting into eighth and 10th, sandwiching Force India driver Sergio Perez.
The two Toro Rosso drivers, Carlos Sainz and Daniil Kvyat, were separated by just 25 thousandths of a second in 11th and 12th, ahead of Williams driver Valtteri Bottas.
Romain Grosjean, who appeared to be battling the same problems under braking as he was in the morning session and had both an off and a spin at the Turn 6 hairpin, was 14th fastest, just ahead of Felipe Massa’s Williams.
But the Franco-Swiss driver only completed 13 laps during the session, spending much of it in the pits presumably chasing the cause of the vibration under braking he complained about over the radio.
During 90 minutes, multiple drivers, including Hamilton, Vettel, Alonso and Perez, were reported for running wide beyond track limits at Turn 1 – early in the session, race control issued a message to teams that this situation was being carefully monitored.
This led to drivers being regularly warned by their teams, albeit with regular infringements continuing, particularly for Perez.
PRACTICE TWO RESULTS:
|4||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||1m16.456s||0.842s||40|
|5||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m16.490s||0.876s||38|
|7||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m16.781s||1.167s||43|
|9||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m17.148s||1.534s||44|
|11||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||1m17.342s||1.728s||32|
|12||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||1m17.367s||1.753s||38|
F1 German GP: Mercedes’ Rosberg fastest in FP1 on home soil
Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg set the pace in first practice for his home Formula 1 grand prix in Germany.
Rosberg’s time of 1m15.517s spearheaded an unsurprisingly dominant one-two for the Silver Arrows, with team-mate Lewis Hamilton 0.326 seconds adrift.
Its nearest challenger in Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel was just over a second back in third.
F1 showed just how far it has come since its last visit to Hockenheim in 2014, with 20 of the 22 drivers quicker than Rosberg’s best FP1 time that year.
Rosberg himself was more than three-and—a-half seconds faster than his 1:19.131s lap in that session, when the current turbo hybrid era was only just six months old.
After losing the championship lead he had held all season last weekend in Hungary, Rosberg was quickly on the pace, leading the way early with a 1m17.030s.
With the super-soft tyres then strapped on for the second half of the session, Rosberg was able to improve by almost two seconds, and was never headed.
Reigning champion Hamilton – on a run of five wins from the last six grands prix to take the points lead from Rosberg – was not as smooth as his team-mate throughout a lap, resulting in the three-tenths deficit.
Both drivers were among the many who went off track at Turn 1, which proved particularly problematic to get right as the limits were explored.
Behind the Mercedes duo, Vettel emerged the best of the rest, just over two tenths of a second ahead of Ferrari team-mate Kimi Raikkonen.
Red Bull pair Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo were fifth and sixth quickest, separated by 0.162s.
On his 35th birthday, Fernando Alonso emerged seventh fastest in his McLaren, 1.666s down on Rosberg.
Alonso was followed by team-mate Jenson Button, seemingly underlining McLaren’s recently-declared belief it is now the fourth quickest team in F1 behind Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull.
With the timesheets following a team-by-team order, Toro Rosso pair Daniil Kvyat and Carlos Sainz Jr rounded out the top 10, with both around 2.5s down.
Further down the field there were practice outings for Ferrari junior Charles Leclerc with Haas and Renault reserve Esteban Ocon.
Leclerc, standing in Esteban Gutierrez, was 17th, just three places and three tenths of a second behind Romain Grosjean.
Ocon, meanwhile, was 19th and only 0.048s behind Kevin Magnussen, with Jolyon Palmer having made way.
PRACTICE ONE RESULTS:
|5||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||1m16.927s||1.410s||29|
|6||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m17.089s||1.572s||30|
|9||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||1m18.008s||2.491s||25|
|10||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||1m18.044s||2.527s||22|
|15||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m18.591s||3.074s||35|
|16||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m18.628s||3.111s||29|
Kimi Raikkonen drove like an F1 champion in Hungarian GP – Ferrari
Kimi Raikkonen proved his Formula 1 world champion credentials with his performance in the Hungarian Grand Prix, according to his Ferrari team principal Maurizio Arrivabene.
Raikkonen and Ferrari got their timing wrong on a rapidly drying track in qualifying, which led to the Finn qualifying 14th.
But the 2007 world champion fought his way through the field, challenging Max Verstappen for fifth when he lost part of his front wing after tapping the rear of the Red Bull.
It comes just one race after Raikkonen signed a new deal to extend his stay at Ferrari until the end of next season.
"I’m very happy because Kimi showed that he was not the last world champion with Ferrari for nothing," said Arrivabene.
"On Sunday, he was really, really a fighter."
Raikkonen felt Verstappen’s driving in defence of fifth place "was not correct" with the Dutchman avoiding investigation by the stewards.
But he was pleased with the car’s performance and the way the team responded following a poor qualifying.
"I had a very good car but unfortunately after Saturday, we were in a position where we couldn’t really get the results that with the car and what we had, we could’ve done," he said.
"We knew when we started the race that it wasn’t going to be easy.
"We did more of less the maximum we could.
"If I’d managed to get past Max it would’ve be better but that didn’t happen so we ended up sixth.
"It’s a bit disappointing in that way because the car was working well and nice to drive and more or less what we could expect."
Kimi Raikkonen: Max Verstappen’s Hungarian GP driving not correct
Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen feels Formula 1 rival Max Verstappen’s driving in defence of fifth place during the Hungarian Grand Prix "was not correct".
Raikkonen lost part of his front wing when he touched the rear of Verstappen’s Red Bull on the approach to Turn 2 as they battled for position.
The Dutchman robustly defended his position on several other occasions, including at Turn 1 when Raikkonen attempted to go around the outside.
"I tried to miss him and I just managed to but there were two times that in my feelings it wasn’t correct," said Raikkonen.
"For me you move once right and then I decided to go left but the other car moved back.
"I did everything I could do to avoid any contact but once I decided to go somewhere you can’t just come there.
"It was good that I managed to somehow half miss him."
Regarding the incident at Turn 1, Raikkonen said: "I moved and then once I decided to go, it’s very hard to back off and the other car started to move after me.
"I guess in the rules… there are so many different rules these days that if you’re in front then in some rules you can move.
"But when the guy behind takes his position you commit to something and when the other car moves afterwards it’s difficult to avoid the car in front."
Raikkonen complained about Verstappen’s driving on team radio with Ferrari raising it with FIA race director Charlie Whiting.
When told about Raikkonen’s complaints, Verstappen said: "As a driver you always try to find excuses.
"But I think I only moved once all the time so for me there was no issue."
Ferrari team principal Maurizio Arrivabene admitted to going "ballistic" during the heat of the battle but conceded the team had to accept the stewards’ decision not to investigate.
"The rules talk about one move but we all got the impression we saw two moves," he said.
"We called Charlie and they said they were looking carefully at the images and in their opinion it was only one move.
"In this situation, we need to win the races on the track.
"We know that we can’t win the races on paper."
Raikkonen: F1 rule enforcement "a joke", needs changing
A disheartened Kimi Raikkonen has said that Formula 1 "must change" its approach to rule enforcement after several controversies during the Hungarian Grand Prix weekend.
Raikkonen was held to sixth by Max Verstappen in a battle that featured two near-crashes – with the Finn damaging his front wing against Verstappen’s Red Bull RB12 at Turn 2 and, a few laps later, narrowly avoiding the Dutchman under braking at Turn 1.
And while Raikkonen initially spoke of his disappointment that Verstappen’s defending did not yield a penalty, the former F1 champion soon segued into speaking out against F1’s recent approach to rules as a whole.
Raikkonen said: "There’s rules but obviously this weekend it’s been [questionable] – not just talking about the incidents between me and Max – but in many ways, and yesterday.
"Why do we have rules if stewards can decide ‘it’s okay here, it’s not okay here’? Pointless to have any rules if they don’t apply all the time, for all the people."
The Ferrari driver then criticised Saturday’s decision to allow five cars – among them Verstappen and teammate Daniel Ricciardo – to take the start in their qualifying positions, after the FIA opted not to demote the respective drivers down the order to falling below the 107 percent mark in Q1.
"A good example yesterday in qualifying, you have the 107 percent rule and the people who didn’t go through first qualifying, they [the stewards] apply it for those cars but not for the rest.
"How can you suddenly have the same rule in same qualifying applied two different ways? If somebody can explain how that works…
"But that’s F1 these days, and something must change. It just looks bad to people outside, to you guys, and it’s not fair. There’s a rule, it should apply exactly the same way every time to everybody."
Verstappen "not correct"
Speaking about the Verstappen battle specifically, Raikkonen reiterated his belief that the Dutchman overstepped the line in defending position.
Elaborating on the first incident, he said: "For me, he moved once right, I decided to go left but once the other guy moves back, I did everything I could to avoid any contact.
"Once I decided to go somewhere, you cannot just come there – it is good that I managed to somehow half-miss him."
Talking about the latter move – when Raikkonen locked up round the outside of Turn 1 to avoid contact – the Finn said: "It was a bit of a similar story, that second thing – obviously I made a move and once I decided to go, it’s very hard to back off and try to avoid the other car, once the other car started to move after me.
"I tried to miss him and I just managed to miss him but it was two times that, in my feeling, he wasn’t correct.
"But obviously, like I said, the stewards – or the people who decide how things go here, the stewards and some other guys – in many ways, it’s a joke with the rules, you know?"
Lewis Hamilton takes F1 points lead with Hungarian GP victory
Lewis Hamilton captured his fifth Hungarian Grand Prix victory to claim the lead in the 2016 Formula 1 world championship for the first time.
From second on the grid behind polesitting Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg, Hamilton took the lead into the first corner and controlled the race from there.
His fifth victory in six races means he has turned a 43-point deficit into a six-point lead in that time.
Rosberg had to settle for runner-up, 1.9 seconds behind, with Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo just managing to hold off Sebastian Vettel’s Ferrari for the final podium spot.
Ricciardo’s team-mate Max Verstappen did the same to the other Ferrari of Kimi Raikkonen in a scrap so close the Finn clipped the Dutchman’s car at one stage.
Neither Mercedes had made a supreme getaway from the front row and the Red Bulls both attacked.
Ricciardo nosed ahead around the outside but Hamilton kept both the Australian and Verstappen’s inside line attack at bay. Rosberg then repassed Ricciardo around the outside of Turn 2.
At first the Red Bulls stayed close to the Mercedes, with Verstappen complaining he was "driving like a grandma" behind Ricciardo.
But he the main loser in the first round of stops, dropping behind Vettel as Ferrari used an undercut and also Raikkonen, who started 14th on softs and ran 29 laps in his first stint. The time spent behind the Finn left Verstappen out of the podium fight.
Just before the midway point Hamilton was warned by his team to pick up the pace otherwise Rosberg would pit first at the second round of stops to fend off the threat being posed by Ricciardo.
"I’m driving to the best of my ability," responded Hamilton, who then managed a surge to put 2.8s between himself and Rosberg.
It was enough for Hamilton to take precedence as another set of softs was fitted after 41 laps, with Rosberg following a lap later, and both stayed ahead of the early-stopping Ricciardo.
On lap 53 of 70, with Hamilton held up by the Haas of Esteban Gutierrez – earning the Mexican a middle-finger salute from the Briton when he finally passed and a five-second time penalty for ignoring blue flags – Rosberg closed to 0.6s.
Hamilton then edged away, only for the gap to fall to 0.6s again after 62 laps following a small lock-up at Turn 12, but it was as close as Rosberg managed to get.
Vettel steadily closed in on Ricciardo for third to no avail, while Raikkonen found himself chasing Verstappen as their alternate strategies played out, attacking repeatedly on fresh super-softs but ended up frustrated.
Behind the top six was McLaren’s Fernando Alonso, followed by the Toro Rosso of Carlos Sainz Jr, Williams’s Valtteri Bottas and Nico Hulkenberg for Force India.
McLaren’s Jenson Button was the only retirement after a miserable race including an early loss of hydraulic pressure affecting his brakes, a drive-through penalty for unauthorised radio communication while addressing the problem and finally an oil leak.
RESULTS – 70 LAPS:
|3||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||27.539s|
|5||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||48.659s|
|7||Fernando Alonso||McLaren/Honda||1 Lap|
|8||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|9||Valtteri Bottas||Williams/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|10||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|11||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|12||Jolyon Palmer||Renault||1 Lap|
|13||Esteban Gutierrez||Haas/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|14||Romain Grosjean||Haas/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|15||Kevin Magnussen||Renault||1 Lap|
|16||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|17||Felipe Nasr||Sauber/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|18||Felipe Massa||Williams/Mercedes||2 Laps|
|19||Pascal Wehrlein||Manor/Mercedes||2 Laps|
|20||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber/Ferrari||2 Laps|
|21||Rio Haryanto||Manor/Mercedes||2 Laps|
|–||Jenson Button||McLaren/Honda||Oil leak|