Kimi Raikkonen believes Lotus’s form has been harmed by Formula 1’s switch to new Pirelli tires at this weekend’s Hungarian Grand Prix. The Finn has been unhappy with his car throughout the Hungaroring weekend and qualified back in sixth.
“I think it is a combination of the new tires, the front tires, they are a bit like last year and they are not as strong as the last ones we ran — that is not ideal for me,” said Raikkonen. “We’ll try to work on that.
“In qualifying it was not too bad, we should have probably run a bit more front wing and been up there at the front. But I am much happier now than I was earlier in the weekend.
“It is not a disaster, but it is not as we want.”
Asked if he was concerned that Lotus was now going to struggle more in the coming races, Raikkonen said he was optimistic it could adapt.
“We just have to do some changes and improve it,” he said. “We have some ideas but we didn’t have much time to do different things over a race weekend, so we have to make some plans.”
Raikkonen’s teammate Romain Grosjean qualified third behind Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes and Sebastian Vettel’s Red Bull. The Frenchman was more upbeat about his race chances.
“The option [soft] is quite tough tire to make last but medium was OK on our car,” said Grosjean. “It can change things a bit — hopefully tomorrow I can have a go.
“It has been a pretty good weekend so far. There will be different strategies and we will try and get the best from the car when we get some clean air.”