Kimi Räikkönen is hopeful this weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix is as straightforward as the season-opening Australian Grand Prix, where he had the better of Sebastian Vettel until the virtual safety car gave his Scuderia Ferrari team-mate the advantage and the victory.
The Finn knows the race weekend at the Bahrain International Circuit will be held in totally different conditions thanks to it being run at twilight, and he knows the feeling behind the wheel will also differ to what he experienced two weeks ago.
“Melbourne was a good and straightforward weekend,” said Räikkönen. “Overall we had a good feeling with the car and decent speed .
“The Sakhir track is very different and with completely different conditions. Practice will be in the daylight and the race in the dark, but we are used to it. It’s quite hot and the feeling with your car is different.”
Räikkönen knows Ferrari will need to keep their focus and work hard to improve their SF71H after generally finding themselves behind Lewis Hamilton and the Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport team in Australia.
“I’m happy with the way we started the season, but we need to keep working hard, improve things and hopefully we’ll achieve a good result again with both cars,” said Räikkönen. “We need to be up there straightaway and consistently.
“We are still in the early days of a long season and there are still many things we need to learn about this car. I think there’s a lot of potential; where it’s going to take us in the end, we don’t know. But we’ll give our best, that’s for sure”.