Formula 1

Kimi Räikkönen: “It’s a place where you need to be focused all the time”

2 Mins read
Credit: Xavi Bonilla / DPPI

Kimi Räikkönen says preparation and concentration will be key this weekend at the Jeddah Corniche Circuit as he aims to score points in what will be his penultimate race in Formula 1 before retirement.

The Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN driver will leave Formula 1 at the end of the season and will be replaced in the team by fellow Finn Valtteri Bottas, but he will be looking to end his successful career on a high.

Räikkönen says he curious to see how strong Alfa Romeo will be in this weekend’s Saudi Arabian Grand Prix – the first time Formula 1 has raced in the country – and if the team do their homework they could in contention for the top ten come Sunday evening under the floodlights.

“We are heading to another new track and, like last time out in Doha, preparing for the race in the most effective way will be crucial,” said Räikkönen.  “The track looks fast and, as a street circuit, it’s a place where you need to be focused all the time: I am curious to drive it and won’t form an opinion about it until then.

“It’s going to be interesting and I don’t see any reason, if we do our job properly, why we wouldn’t be as competitive as we have been in the last few months.

“For sure, part of what will make or break a good result will be our readiness to make the most of the circumstances, but that’s not different from every other weekend.”

“It’s early to say if this layout will work well for us or not” – Antonio Giovinazzi

Team-mate Antonio Giovinazzi also has only two races left before he moves on to race in the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship, with the Italian being replaced at Alfa Romeo by Guanyu Zhou.

It has been a disappointing campaign for Giovinazzi, with just one points finish to his name, but despite knowing he will be leaving Formula 1 at the end of the year, he is looking to end his tenure at Alfa Romeo on a high.

“Two more races until the end of the season means two chances to have a good result to finish off the year with a smile,” said Giovinazzi.  “The last few weeks have been quite busy for me, but I find this keeps me focused and fired up for this weekend of racing.

“The track in Jeddah is a big question mark for everyone, nobody has raced on it so, in a sense, we are all starting from scratch here. It can be an opportunity for us and we’ll need to do our homework to make sure we give ourselves the best chance.

“It’s early to say if this layout will work well for us or not, but I want to think we can give a good account of ourselves.”

Antonio Giovinazzi has just two races of his F1 career to go before he switches to Formula E – Credit: Xavi Bonilla / DPPI
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