Kimi Raikkonen is confident he will win races this season because of his performance level, and doesn’t see his Azerbaijan Grand Prix podium as particularly lucky.
Lewis Hamilton took victory in a chaotic race where Sebastian Vettel dropped to fourth after attempting to take the lead from Valtteri Bottas late on, before Bottas himself retired with a puncture three laps from the end. Hamilton described the win as fortunate, but Raikkonen – who came second despite a first-lap collision with Esteban Ocon – says he places less emphasis on luck and is only concerned over whether he has the speed to deliver results.
“Well, I wouldn’t say that I have had a lot of luck over the years, but I don’t count on luck,” Raikkonen said. “You cannot count on that. I think you get what you deserve in a way and sometimes you are a bit luckier than other times, but if I take over the years, I’m far from on the positive side yet.
“Maybe [in Baku] certain things worked in our direction, but then whatever happened in front of us are self-made issues in many ways. Stay out of trouble in this kind of race, and definitely knowing what happened last year, it’s going to pay off.
“I’m more happy that I have the speed – I know that I have the speed. We just didn’t do it: the mistake [in qualifying] and some issues earlier. That’s the main thing, that we have the speed. We just need to put it together and I’m sure that we can do even better.”
Having secured his third podium in four races, Raikkonen moved up to third in the drivers’ championship but believes his retirement in the Bahrain Grand Prix proves that his team needs to capitalize on its potential consistently to mount a title challenge.
“I don’t even know what the points are, but obviously we have one DNF and that definitely doesn’t help us but this is how it is right now. I think we have the speed, we are pretty confident in that, we just need to minimize all the issues and put things solidly together so I think we can be up there all the time.”