After initially getting a good start to the Mexican Grand Prix, Scuderia Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen began to struggle with the medium tyres after the first round of pit stops.
Having put on a used set of the hardest rubber on the first occasion, when the 2007 world champion reported a lack of grip, the Maranello based squad opted to pit the Finn again for a new set to see if that would solve the issue.
It made no difference however and saw Raikkonen pushed down the order, with the majority of drivers able to stick out the one stop strategy.
“My start was not too bad and we were running quite ok.
“After the first pit stop, though, I struggled to get any good grip with the Mediums, so we thought maybe we should try to see if we could go back on track with a new set of the same tyres: but to be honest I had no better grip at the rear.”
Having not used the medium tyres prior to the race, they were somewhat of an unknown quantity to Raikkonen, who despite losing out on position due to Ferrari’s tactics, was happy that they had gone ahead and tried an alternative strategy.
“It was the first time I was running with these tyres, maybe it’s just how the tyre is. Afterwards it’s easy to say that probably it was not the right thing to do, but I’m happy that we tried.”
Having climbed up to seventh place, the Finn caught Sahara Force India Formula 1 Team driver Nico Hulkenberg in the final moments of the race, and attempted a pass around the outside at Turn 4.
The move caused the German to take evasive action in order to avoid a collision with the SF16-H, sending him into a spin, but Raikkonen felt it was a fair pass with enough space for him to get by.
“It was not easy to pass Hulkenberg, it’s difficult when you get close and you have no grip. I don’t know if we touched, I just saw him spin.”