It was a damp, disappointing afternoon at the Sochi Autodrom for Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN, with both drivers getting eliminated in Qualifying One at the Russian Grand Prix. Kimi Räikkönen qualified sixteenth with Antonio Giovinazzi in eighteenth, both will start slightly higher due to penalties to other drivers.
The returning Räikkönen got the better of his Italian team-mate at a very damp Sochi Autodrom circuit. The Finnish driver was close to a spot in Qualifying Two but in the end just didn’t quite have the pace to make the top fifteen.
Räikkönen found the car on edge the entire time in qualifying but as always will try his best on Sunday.
“The conditions weren’t too bad out there but we lacked a bit of grip. The balance of the car was ok, but we were just on the edge all the time – and when that goes over the limit, it goes quickly. The more lap we did the better it got, but in the end we just couldn’t get more out of it. We’ll try our best tomorrow and see where we can end up.”
“We couldn’t express all our potential” – Antonio Giovinazzi
The recently strong Giovinazzi had a miserable qualifying in Russia, the Italian suffered an issue with the brakes during qualifying. This prevented him from putting any real competitive lap together and was therefore no threat to the top fifteen.
Giovinazzi is hoping the team can fix the brake problem so that he can show the cars real potential in the race.
“A disappointing day in which we couldn’t express all our potential. I had an issue with the brakes that made it difficult to drive, especially in the wet and not having run FP3. We need to understand what happened and fix it to have a better day tomorrow. We’ll need to see what weather we’re going to have and focus on our job. We will have faster cars around us, starting from the back, we will need to stay out of trouble and see how we can progress.”