Kimi Räikkönen said there was more performance within his C38-Ferrari than he was able to extract during Qualifying for the Australian Grand Prix, with the Finn relatively unhappy to qualify only ninth on Saturday afternoon at Albert Park.
Pre-season testing had shown Alfa Romeo Racing to be up near the front of the midfield battle and it had been hoped that they could end up as best of the rest behind the leading three teams, but Räikkönen saw himself out-qualified by both Haas F1 Team drivers and by McLaren F1 Team’s Lando Norris, meaning he will start the race on Sunday on the fifth row of the grid.
“Am I happy? Yes and no,” said Räikkönen. “I’m a bit disappointed, as I think there is more in the car and we could have ended further up, but I never really put a lap together.
“Now let’s get through the first two corners of the race without incidents and then take it from there.”
Team-mate Antonio Giovinazzi, participating in his first Qualifying session since the 2017 Chinese Grand Prix when he was a stand-in driver for the injured Pascal Wehrlein within the Sauber F1 Team, was eliminated in Q2 and will start fourteenth on the grid, with the Italian disappointed not to follow Räikkönen into Q3 after a small but costly mistake on his quickest lap.
“The qualifying was ok,” said Giovinazzi. “I put together quite a good lap in Q1. In Q2, the warm-up lap in my last run did not go as well. A small mistake costs you quite a bit of time in such a tight midfield.
“We have a good car and race pace and will have the chance to fight for points in the race tomorrow. The strategy will be important as it is quite challenging to overtake on this circuit. I will do my best to have a positive result for the team.”