Formula 1

“Two completely new tracks is quite interesting” – Kimi Räikkönen

2 Mins read
Credit: Florent Gooden / DPPI

In what has already been an eventful week for the Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN team, with the announcement that Guanyu Zhou will be replacing Antonio Giovinazzi for next season, the team must now refocus as they prepare for the first ever Qatar Grand Prix.

Amazingly, two of the last three races in Kimi Räikkönen’s Formula One career will take place at tracks the 2007 World Champion has never raced at. The Finnish driver is interested by the fact he will be visiting two new venues across the next couple weeks, with this weekend’s race taking place at the Losail International Circuit.

Räikkönen is all too familiar with getting to grips with a new circuit for the sport, meaning that all his years of experience will be vital in Qatar.

“I am approaching the last three races of my career and to race in two completely new tracks is quite interesting: it sure adds a bit of variety and keeps things fresh. The track looks fairly straightforward, with a long straight, a good overtaking spot at the end of it and a twisty middle part in which passing will be hard. It will be all about setting yourself up in the best position to attack on the finish straight, but that’s as much as we can tell now.

“Practice will be important to find out what the grip is and how the tyres work, especially as we expect the surface to be dusty at first. We showed some good pace in the last few races, so hopefully we can get on top of the track quickly and have a good result.”

“My objective is to have some strong performances” – Antonio Giovinazzi

Antonio Giovinazzi’s week in the build-up to the Qatar Grand Prix has been an emotional one, after it was announced on Tuesday that he will be leaving Formula One, after being replaced by the first ever Chinese Formula One driver in Guanyu Zhou.

The Italian driver has already put the announcement into the back of his mind and is fully focused on the task at hand this weekend, where he will be hoping to have a strong performance.

“I am really looking forward to being back in the cockpit and to getting back to racing. The announcements of this week are in the past now, and my objective is to have some strong performances for the remainder of the season. Qatar is a new track for everyone, so we all start from zero: this can be an opportunity for whoever gets up to speed the quickest.

“It is obvious, by now, that achieving a good result will take a flawless weekend: the midfield is as close as it can be and you can go from hero to zero, and vice-versa, with just some tiny gains or mistakes. We are due a good result after some unlucky races and this weekend would be a great occasion to claim it.”

Credit: Florent Gooden / DPPI
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