Kimi Raikkonen has ended the Canadian Grand Prix downbeat, despite equalling Michael Schumacher’s record of 24 consecutive points finishes. The Finn, who has finished in the points at every race since China last year, endured a tough weekend around Montreal’s Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.
After a slightly frustrating Monaco Grand Prix last time out, the 2007 World Champion was understandably hoping for a return to his usual competitiveness this weekend at Montreal, a race the Finn has won once before with McLaren. However, such hopes were dashed from day one, when the Finn was struck with a brake issue during Friday afternoon’s second practice session. Kimi Raikkonen’s qualifying performance was dampened in the rain, with his race equally unlucky after the return of his brake issues and fuel conservation woes.
“My race didn’t start very well and then my brakes were fading with the pedal going soft; similar to the problem we had on Friday.” Explained a downbeat Kimi Raikkonen, “It wasn’t ideal but at least the brakes were good enough to slow me down for the corners. Unfortunately though it meant I lost a lot of time and wasn’t able to attack, plus we lost a few seconds in the pit stop which obviously didn’t help either. Most of my race was just following the cars in front and defending from those behind, so not the most enjoyable day nor the most enjoyable result. It’s been a bad weekend, but at least we scored a few points.”
Despite qualifying 22nd and last for the Canadian Grand Prix following a post-Monaco Grand Prix penalty and a frustratingly uncompetitive qualifying performance, Romain Grosjean was still left lamenting after the Frenchman failed to finish in the points. Although he elected to make his first stop on Lap 42, the option tyres failed to last as long as predicted on his E21 machine and forced the Frenchman to pit for a second time on Lap 54, therefore destroying his chances of a points finish.
“It was always going to be a tough race coming from the back, but it’s still disappointing to miss out on the points.” Said Romain Grosjean, “Things were looking good until we switched to the option tyres, but they dropped off far quicker than we expected which forced us to stop again. Sadly that effectively put an end to our race as by that time there was no way back.”
After a highly uncompetitive showing at the Canadian Grand Prix, Lotus has now been leapfrogged by Mercedes for 3rd in the Constructors’ Championship, along with Kimi Raikkonen dropping to 3rd in the Drivers’ Championship. After a sensational start to the season for Lotus, it seems as though the three-week gap until the British Grand Prix will be greatly welcomed to allow the team to refocus.
Picture Copyright © Lotus F1 Team