While his teammate took all the glory for winning the Brazilian Grand Prix on Sunday afternoon, Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen contributed to the team’s 19 podium finishes of the 2017 with his third placed finish on the Interlagos Circuit.
Fans were on the edge of their seats during the final few laps of the 71 lap event as the Mercedes of Lewis Hamilton, who had started from pitlane, closed in on the Finnish driver, giving all he had to claim the final place on the podium. However Kimi was unruffled by the four time champion’s presence in his mirrors and knew he was more than capable of keeping the Silver Arrow firmly behind him all the way to the finish.
Kimi was confident that Hamilton wouldn’t get past, because he knew only too well how hard it was to pass a car running at roughly the same pace. Kimi had been trying to do just that with second placed Valtteri Bottas and was simply unable to do so as he needed to take care of his tyres on the 60 degree Brazilian track…
“My start was pretty average, I had some wheelspin and I was happy I did not lose any places,” Kimi explained. “The first fifteen laps were a bit tricky with tyres, but after the pit stop I was happy with my car. I expected that improvement, because I knew that with the soft tyres I would be really strong.”
“It was easy to keep up with the guys in front and at the same time look after my tyres. At some point I tried to push and I got closer; I felt I had a lot of speed but in these conditions there was no way to pass. It was a bit frustrating, but when Hamilton was behind me I could see him closing up, but I had a good car and I was pretty confident that if I was not making any stupid mistake I could keep him behind.”
“I held him quite easily, he never really had a good chance to get me. Obviously we could have finished one place up, but it’s a great result for the team. The car has been pretty strong all weekend. We have been strong almost everywhere this year, obviously in a few races we had some difficulties, but as a team we can be proud. We are building ourselves for next year.”