Kimi Räikkönen says he’s “sure [Ferrari] had the speed and everything to get the first place”, but that traffic stopped him from getting a clear lap and doing any better than third.
Qualifying for the Hungarian Grand Prix was a roller-coaster from start to finish, with changing weather conditions forcing drivers to use every tyre from the Soft to the full wet. Whilst the rain largely held off during the first and second sessions, the third and final session was by far the wettest, seeing drivers battling torrential rain on the track and thunderstorms above it. This left drivers with no option but to use the full wet tyre.
While the wet tyre offers drivers improved grip compared to the Intermediate, it leaves enormous plumes of water behind them as it displaces sixty-five litres of water per second. This makes it incredibly hard for drivers behind to see where they’re going and, says Räikkönen, is what caused Ferrari’s performance deficit in qualifying.
“Overall this weekend the car has been really good in any conditions”, said Räikkönen. “In qualifying it was a bit tricky, but I enjoyed driving it a lot. The speed was there and the car was working well in wet conditions.
“Today we were more competitive in the rain than we had been in other places; It was nice, I was pleased because this hadn’t been our strongest point lately.
“In Q3 with used tires we were fastest of all, but with the new set we were a bit unlucky with the traffic; we got stuck a bit behind another car and with all the spray we could not have a clear lap. There was nothing we could do, as we were limited on time.
“It’s a pity because there was a lot of grip on the new tires: I’m sure we had the speed and everything else to get the first place, but we have to be positively happy that now we can actually challenge for the front in wet conditions”.