x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 24 January 2018

Ferrari man's mistake

Kimi Raikkonen has accepted the blame for a mistake that left Ferrari in the spotlight for the wrong reasons again.

BARCELONA // Kimi Raikkonen has accepted the blame for a mistake that left Ferrari in the spotlight for the wrong reasons again. After the Finn and his teammate Felipe Massa had finished one-two in the final practice, the Italian team were confident during qualifying for today's Spanish Grand Prix. But while Massa highlighted the improvement in the team's performance, following major changes to the F60, with fourth place on the grid, Raikkonen had a nightmare.

A miscalculation meant the former world champion finished a lowly 16th in the first qualifying session - his worst performance since Australia last year - to leave him out of the running for the rest of the session. Raikkonen said: "I was not too keen to go out again because I thought the time we had done would be enough and still get us through. "There's always talk in Formula One [after something like this] and they can blame me if they want, I don't mind. It's a mistake, a silly mistake, and you can't take it away."

Ferrari will be banking on Massa to lift the team to a first victory of a dismal campaign, but he said he was hoping there would be no more errors today. "It's quite bad for us," admitted the Brazilian, who has yet to score a point this season. "I had the same [thing happen] in Malaysia. Kimi did not have a good lap in Q1 and he was supposed to go back, in my opinion, with another set of tyres, but I don't know what happened."

@Email:akhan@thenational.ae