Kimi Räikkönen went into Qualifying for the German Grand Prix knowing there was a good lap time in his SF71H but a mistake on his first flying lap in the top ten shootout meant he was forced to be more reserved on his second run, meaning he was forced to settle for third on the grid.
Räikkönen set a best time of 1:11.547s in the closing moments of the session at the Hockenheimring but the Scuderia Ferrari driver saw both team-mate Sebastian Vettel and Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport’s Valtteri Bottas finish ahead of him.
“Today the car was working well and in qualifying I knew there was a lot of lap time in it,” said Räikkönen. “On my first try in Q3 I had a good feeling and the lap was looking good, but then I made a mistake and got sideways.
“We had the speed to do better, but I did not want to make any crazy mistake and risk throwing everything away, so on my last try I took it a little bit easier.”
“Third position is obviously not ideal, but in the end it is a pretty good position to start from.”
The Finn has seen the SF71H be strong on race days throughout 2018 and expects the same on Sunday, but the Finn knows conditions may change so it is important to do their best and get the maximum result possible.
“It’s difficult to say what will be the key to the race,” said the Finn. “So far our car has been good and I expect it to be the same tomorrow, but the conditions might change.
“As for every race we’ll try to do our maximum and see what it brings in the end. We need to do the best we can.”