Raikkonen expects to be “in the fight” for Baku

Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd

After a difficult Canadian Grand Prix, Kimi Raikkonen expects his Ferrari team to be able to return to its resurgent 2017 form on the streets of Baku.

Finishing seventh at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, Raikkonen anticipates that Ferrari will be able to put its North American underperformance to bed, hoping to fight for victory in the Azerbaijani capital.

“We have been quite good everywhere this season,” said Raikkonen. “Obviously there are stronger and weaker places, but our base level is quite strong and we expect to be in the fight.

“It’s a question of putting all the things together and trying to be the fastest team.”

Raikkonen also predicted a much “easier” race compared to the inaugural grand prix in Baku last year, in which he finished fourth after losing the final spot on the podium to Force India’s Sergio Perez.

“Last year it was the first time we were racing here, and it was difficult,” added Raikkonen. “It was very hot and quite tricky on the tire side, not very easy to manage.

“This year being the second time here, it should be easier for everybody, even though the cars are different and we have slightly different tires. Today it’s a bit cooler, but it’s supposed to heat up over the weekend; let’s see how the weather will turn out.”

The Finnish driver begins the Azerbaijan Grand Prix weekend fourth in the championship, 20 points behind Mercedes driver and compatriot Valtteri Bottas, and six ahead of Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo.