Kimi Raikkonen says Monaco GP F1 qualifying was “a disaster”
Ferrari Formula 1 driver Kimi Raikkonen said his Monaco Grand Prix qualifying was a “disaster” as his disappointing form over one lap this season continued.
The Finn has struggled to put together a tidy lap in qualifying this year and he is the only driver in 2015 to have not out-qualified his team-mate at least once.
Raikkonen will start Sunday’s race from sixth, having finished 1.3s off pole and six tenths adrift of team-mate Sebastian Vettel, who starts third.
“It was a bad result in the end as it’s difficult to overtake here,” said Raikkonen. “It’s not a very happy day.
“It’s going to be a long race if I’m stuck behind some cars, but I’ll try to get the maximum out of it.
“We had no grip on the first set [for the first run]. The second run felt normal but I had traffic.
“It was a disaster. The car felt OK but it was difficult to get heat in the tyres.”
Raikkonen hit the wall at Ste Devote in third practice but he insisted that had no impact on his performance in qualifying.
However, he said the team must get to the bottom of his qualifying struggles because it is making life in the race more difficult than it needs to be.
“We seem to manage to get it wrong every race,” he said. “We have to work on something to try and improve it.
“We don’t put ourselves in very good position for Sunday.
“It makes our races difficult when you start behind because you spend time trying to get past cars and then you drop out the fight in front.”
Ferrari looked strong in final practice, with Vettel topping the timesheets, but the temperatures dropped before qualifying which hindered the Scuderia.
But despite failing to prevent a Mercedes front row lock-out, Vettel is hopeful the team will be closer in the race.
“With higher temperatures, it could have been closer,” said Vettel.
“As it stands, we were quite far away again but tomorrow, we should be a bit closer.
“We have not been able to do long runs, no one has, but the car feels good round here.
“The start will be important. I’m starting on the inside so it gives me the possibility of a good start.”
Monaco GP: Lewis Hamilton leads second F1 practice before rain hits
Mercedes Formula 1 driver Lewis Hamilton finished fastest in second practice for the Monaco Grand Prix, but rain early in the session limited running.
Hamilton clocked a 1m17.192s, 0.7 seconds quicker than team-mate Nico Rosberg, with Sebastian Vettel four tenths further adrift in the Ferrari.
The session was only 14 minutes old when Roberto Merhi lost control of his Manor exiting the tunnel before crunching the front wing into the barriers.
The session was red-flagged and though it restarted six minutes later, a few drops of rain was a sign of worse things to come.
Pastor Maldonado ventured out on a set of super-soft tyres, but while it was relatively dry in the pitlane, rain was falling on the east side of the track and Lotus immediately called the Venezuelan back to the pits.
The rain intensified and most drivers got out of their cars and rolled down their overalls as they prepared for a wait.
Eventually, the rain stopped with half an hour to go, but it wasn’t until the final 10 minutes that drivers headed back out.
The intermediates were generally the tyre of choice but Mercedes decided to split its programme with Rosberg running the full wets instead.
But conditions remained tricky, with the wet track creating a lot of spray and drivers lapping around 18s slower than in the dry.
As a result, Hamilton’s early time – which was 1.6s quicker than his leading time in first practice – kept him top of the pile.
Kimi Raikkonen was fourth fastest, two tenths of a second slower than Ferrari team-mate Vettel, with Red Bull’s Daniil Kvyat fifth.
Max Verstappen, who impressed with the second quickest time in first practice on his first visit to Monaco, was seventh, a tenth slower than Toro Rosso team-mate Carlos Sainz Jr.
Fernando Alonso gave McLaren a top 10 placing with eighth, ahead of Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg and Lotus’s Romain Grosjean.
Sergio Perez was 11th in the second Force India with the Williams of Felipe Massa and Valtteri Bottas 12th and 13th respectively.
Maldonado was 14th, followed McLaren’s Jenson Button, Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo and Sauber’s Felipe Nasr.
Manor’s Merhi beat team-mate Will Stevens to 18th place before his crash while Marcus Ericsson had an ERS issue and didn’t set a lap time.
|5||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m18.548s||1.356s||16|
|6||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m18.659s||1.467s||14|
|7||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m18.782s||1.590s||12|
|9||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m19.151s||1.959s||13|
|11||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m19.300s||2.108s||13|
|16||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m19.639s||2.447s||13|
Monaco GP F1: Lewis Hamilton leads Max Verstappen in practice one
Lewis Hamilton went fastest of all in first practice for the 2015 Monaco Grand Prix, though an impressive Max Verstappen came close to matching him with a late flying lap.
Hamilton’s peak in practice one last year was 1m18.271s but this year his fastest time was 1m18.750s, set mid-way through the session before Mercedes switched to high-fuel running.
Team-mate Rosberg’s quickest during this phase was a second slower, and he fell down the order as others improved their times later on.
Following overnight rain the track was declared wet, and the drivers completed their installation laps on intermediate tyres.
It quickly became apparent that the surface was largely dry and the Mercedes of Hamilton and Rosberg headed back out to lead the way on slick tyres, drilling down into the 1m22s bracket and below in the first 30 minutes.
As ever in Monaco, the asphalt (around 80 per cent of which has been resurfaced since last year) was slippery before it began to rubber in, and the low ambient temperature of 14C made it tough to get heat into the brakes and tyres.
Rosberg brushed the barrier at Tabac early in the session without incurring damage, Daniel Ricciardo, Pastor Maldonado, Romain Grosjean, Valtteri Bottas and Fernando Alonso spun at Sainte Devote, and the escape road at the chicane enjoyed plenty of traffic.
With the first half-hour over and the ‘free’ set of soft tyres handed back, Mercedes upped the ante once more.
Hamilton and Rosberg traded fastest times on their next set of softs, both dipping below the 1m20s mark – a Rubicon the majority of their rivals struggled to cross until the final minutes.
Hamilton’s 1m18.570s would stand as the quickest until the end of the session.
Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen split the Mercedes on their next timed runs, with Vettel just over three-tenths off Hamilton’s benchmark, but he clearly had the Ferrari on the very edge of soft’s grip levels at that stage of the track’s evolution. He would not improve upon his best lap of 1m19.134s.
Alonso also broke through the 1m20s barrier in the last half hour, giving McLaren some succour in a session of mixed success. Jenson Button sat out the first hour while his MP4-30 received attention in the garage.
In a final flurry of track activity just before the chequered flag, Verstappen, Ricciardo, Carlos Sainz, Pastor Maldonado and Daniil Kvyat broke through and split the Mercedes further, with Verstappen falling just 0.149s short of Hamilton’s best.
|2||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m18.899s||0.149s||42|
|3||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m19.086s||0.336s||27|
|5||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m19.245s||0.495s||40|
|7||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m19.520s||0.770s||33|
|14||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m20.619s||1.869s||35|
|15||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m20.784s||2.034s||34|
F1 Spanish GP FP2: Lewis Hamilton fastest from Sebastian Vettel
Mercedes Formula 1 driver Lewis Hamilton comfortably led the way at the top of the timesheets in second practice for the Spanish Grand Prix.
The reigning world champion clocked a 1m26.852s on the medium-compound Pirelli tyre, 0.408s clear of Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel.
Nico Rosberg, who was quickest in first practice, had downshifting problems on his qualifying-simulation run and ended up 0.764s adrift of his team-mate in third.
Hamilton also set the pace on the hard tyres early in the session, the Briton 1.249s clear of Rosberg, with Vettel 0.010s adrift.
Track temperatures hit 50C and ambient temperatures 29C on a glorious day at Barcelona’s Circuit de Catalunya, with conditions expected to get warmer over the course of the weekend.
When the teams switched focus to high-fuel long runs, several drivers reported a lack of grip and were warned about a crosswind at Turn 3.
Aside from a small lock-up on his medium-tyre run, Hamilton didn’t put a foot wrong with Mercedes looking like it still holds an advantage over rival Ferrari.
Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen was fourth quickest, the Finn securing his best time on the second lap of his run after a small mistake on the first.
While Daniil Kvyat set fifth fastest time, one second off the pace, his Red Bull team-mate Daniel Ricciardo didn’t fair so well.
Having completed just nine laps in first practice, the Australian didn’t make an appearance in the second until the five minutes before the end because the team changed his engine.
Red Bull had run a power unit with higher mileage in the first session before swapping to what will be Ricciardo’s fourth of the season and he ended up 13th.
Toro Rosso’s Max Verstappen was just 1.165s slower than Hamilton in sixth, with Jenson Button in the new-liveried and upgraded McLaren half a second further back in seventh.
Valtteri Bottas was the leading Williams in eighth, ahead of Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz Jr, with the other Williams of Felipe Massa completing the top 10.
McLaren’s Fernando Alonso was 11th ahead of Romain Grosjean, who brought out the red flag when his Lotus’ engine cover broke off on the pit straight.
After spending nearly an hour in the garage, Grosjean emerged to run the medium tyres to finish 12th, 2.2s off the pace and two places clear of team-mate Pastor Maldonado.
The Saubers of Felipe Nasr and Marcus Ericsson were 15th and 16th ahead of Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez, with Will Stevens and Roberto Merhi propping up the timesheets in the Manor-run Marussias.
|5||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m27.943s||1.091s||25|
|6||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m28.017s||1.165s||32|
|9||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m28.674s||1.822s||31|
|13||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m29.098s||2.246s||4|
|17||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m29.601s||2.749s||38|
|18||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m29.707s||2.855s||35|
Nico Rosberg pipped Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton to top spot in the first Formula 1 free practice session for the Spanish Grand Prix.
The German ended up at the top of the timesheets, just seven-hundredths of a second faster than Hamilton, with Mercedes almost a second clear of the rest of the field.
Rosberg set the pace during the first half-an-hour, when all drivers have the use of a set of hard-compound Pirelli tyres that they cannot use once the first 30 minutes have finished.
He set a best time of 1m27.333s during this period as he and Hamilton traded fastest times on rubber enduring enough to produce good pace for multiple laps.
That was almost two-tenths faster than Hamllton could manage, with Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel, who did briefly go fastest, ending up third and 0.8s down.
Once onto their new sets of hard Pirellis, Hamilton drew first blood, outpacing Rosberg by 45-thousandths of a second on their first flying laps, largely thanks to stunning pace in the first sector.
But with Hamilton’s second flier looking set to improve his advantage, he had a slow final sector, meaning that his first flying lap was to remain his fastest of the morning.
Rosberg then improved, finding almost a tenth of a second in the final sector compared to his first lap, to establish a 0.070s margin in first place.
Ferrari was best of the rest, with Vettel and Raikkonen separated by just 26-thousandths, but they were a second slower than Rosberg.
Scuderia Toro Rosso pairing Carlos Sainz and Max Verstappen ran strongly throughout the session to seal fifth and sixth place, with the lead Red Bull of Daniil Kvyat – sporting a new nose – in seventh, just under two seconds off the pace.
It was another difficult session for Red Bull, with Kvyat’s team-mate Daniel Ricciardo not able to complete any proper running until the final 10 minutes of the session.
The Australian reported a problem when he applied full throttle on his outlap, and while he soon returned to the track for another attempt, he then disappeared into the garage for much of the session before restarting late on to go ninth fastest.
As usual, Williams had a relatively low-profile Friday practice session on heavy fuel, with Felipe Massa eighth and development driver Susie Wolff, making her first FP1 appearance since last July’s German GP weekend, 14th and 0.877s off the Brazilian.
Sauber driver Felipe Nasr banged in a lap good enough for 10th, 2.312s off the pace, with 12 minutes remaining, which relegated Force India driver Nico Hulkenberg to 11th.
Reserve driver Raffaele Marciello backed up team-mate Nasr in 12th place on his second FP1 appearance, with another backup driver, Jolyon Palmer, 13th in the faster of the Lotus-Mercedes.
McLaren-Honda had a quiet start to the weekend with its upgraded MP4-30, with Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button setting near-identical pace in 15th and 16th places.
At one stage, Button reported that “the balance is completely wrong” over the radio with the front wing he was trying, while Alonso had a late spin at Turn 12.
Sergio Perez, who had a trip through the gravel exiting Turn 3 after 26 minutes, was 17th in the second Force India.
Pastor Maldonado was only able to complete seven laps thanks to what the team described as a “minor gearbox issue”, meaning his fastest time was his run on the first set of tyres, putting him down in 18th place and ahead only of the two Manor-run Marussias of Will Stevens and Roberto Merhi.
|5||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m28.132s||1.304s||27|
|6||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m28.529s||1.701s||23|
|7||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m28.785s||1.957s||7|
|9||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m29.075s||2.247s||9|
|11||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m29.409s||2.581s||20|
|17||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m30.096s||3.268s||19|
Da Autosprint n.18 del 05/05/2015:
Kimi impressionato dalla nuova GES
“Bella e molto diversa dalla sede precedente”
Maranello, 29 Aprile – Quando Kimi Raikkonen l’aveva vista per l’ultima volta, la sede della nuova Gestione Sportiva non era ancora del tutto completa. Ma ora che i vari reparti sono quasi tutti operativi al 100 per cento, Kimi ha approfittato di una giornata di lavoro (con tanto di sessione al simulatore) per visitare con attenzione i nuovi locali. Ad accompagnarlo nel tour, il direttore tecnico di Maranello James Allison. Raikkonen si è intrattenuto a lungo con Maurizio Arrivabene, poi ha voluto soffermarsi in diverse stazioni di lavoro, rimanendo favorevolmente impressionato dalla qualità dell’ambiente, dall’illuminazione dei locali, e persino… dall’elasticità del pavimento. “E’ bella e molto diversa dalla fabbrica di prima”, ha commentato sorridendo. In questi giorni si completa la preparazione di piloti, uomini e vetture prima del Gp di Spagna sul Circuit de Catalunya, alla fine della settimana prossima. La prima sfida del campionato in territorio europeo.
Ferrari F1 boss says Kimi Raikkonen deserves 2016 deal
Ferrari wants to keep Kimi Raikkonen in Formula 1, but it does not want to offer him a new deal yet because it feels he performs best under pressure.
The Finn took advantage of an alternative tyre strategy to finish second between the Mercedes of Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg in the Bahrain Grand Prix.
It was the 2007 world champion’s best result since rejoining Ferrari last season and came on the back of a difficult start to the season.
"I am really happy for Kimi," said Ferrari team principal Maurizio Arrivabene. "I can officially state that he’s back.
"He showed what a race animal he is. Kimi is giving the best when he is a bit in trouble."
Ferrari has yet to decide whether to take up its option on Raikkonen for next season and Arrivabene said while the Finn was strong in Bahrain, he wants to keep him on his toes.
"I’m happy with the drivers we have," he said. "This doesn’t mean I am going to sign tomorrow with Kimi.
"I said to Kimi, it depends on your performance. He has demonstrated he is a great driver.
"If you’re asking me if he deserves to renew the option now, I’m going to say yes.
"But if I’m going to say yes, I do not want the driver to fall asleep.
"This is a psychological approach. The paper at the moment is white.
"Sometimes you have to take the pen and take it away, and then Kimi is going to the podium…"