Kimi Raikkonen: “It was a struggle to follow him close”

Despite feeling he was quicker than Max Verstappen during the Spanish Grand Prix on Sunday, Kimi Raikkonen was unable to find a way passed the Dutchman, and was forced to settle for second place.

Raikkonen bemoaned the degradation of the tyres, and the downforce and grip levels lost when following closely another car, meaning the Scuderia Ferrari driver was forced to play second fiddle to the Red Bull Racing driver.

The Finn also admitted to having a lacklustre start, but despite having a difficult weekend at the Circuit de Catalunya, he was happy to salvage a second place finish.

“I had a poor start, with massive wheel spin when I released the clutch,” said Raikkonen. “I managed to recover some places in the first few corners and then I caught up with Max pretty easily.

“The car was ok and the speed was good, but once you are following another car for many laps this doesn’t help the tires and I was missing a bit of grip and downforce.

“It was a struggle to follow him close, I never really had a good run on him out of the last corner because he was really fast there. It’s a bit disappointing when you get that close and you don’t win, but after a difficult weekend we have to be somehow happy for this result.

“As a team we keep working as hard as we can and try to get the wins, we keep fighting and when we have difficult weekends likes this one, we have to keep the fight alive and be up there to score points.

“Max really deserves this win, for me he’s not a surprise. He was doing a very good job already last year and today in a better car he was able to win.”