Kimi Raikkonen: “I had no speed in the straight”

Mexican Grand Prix - Ferrari sixth and seventh on the grid. Credit: Scuderia Ferrari

It was a disappointing qualifying session for Scuderia Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen on Saturday, who despite having a good feeling in the SF16-H during Q1, struggled to get the tyres working for the remainder of the session.

“In Q1 the feeling with the car was good, better than in the morning during P3. Then in Q2 it was quite tricky to get the tyres to work consistently and to know where the grip was.”

Though the tyres did come back to him briefly during his first run in Q3, the Finn was suddenly down on speed on the straight when it was time for his final lap, an oddity he could not understand.

That left the 2007 world champion down the order in sixth place at the chequered flag, not just behind both Red Bull Racing drivers, but behind Sahara Force India Formula 1 Team driver Nico Hulkenberg too.

“In the last qualifying stint we were getting there again, but in the first run I felt it a bit odd in the last part of the lap and felt I could have gone faster in a few places.

“On the second try, for whatever reason, I had no speed in the straight, something was not right and we could not even try to go faster.”

The team will now investigate the cause of Raikkonen’s issues, and hope they can resolve them ahead of today’s race. If they can, the Finn believes the speed is definitely there to allow them to pose a challenge.

“It’s a pity because I think there was easily quite a lot of speed there today, but we couldn’t use it. Now we have to find out what happened.

“Obviously it’s disappointing where we finished today but tomorrow we’ll see what we can do.”