Hamilton wary of threat from Raikkonen and Alonso

2013 Chinese Grand Prix

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Lewis Hamilton expects to come under attack from Kimi Raikkonen and Fernando Alonso in the opening stages of the Chinese Grand Prix.

Hamilton shares the front row of the grid with Raikkonen and Alonso lined up behind them.

“I think the two closest guys are going to be the biggest challenge,” said Hamilton after taking pole position for Mercedes.

“The Ferrari’s massively quick on the first lap and so’s Kimi. And Kimi is particularly very strong looking after the [soft] tyre. So it’s going to be very hard to keep them behind.

“And then after that I thin once we get on the [medium] tyre I think we’re in a good position. So it’s just how much ground we can maintain or try not to lose in the first stint.”

Hamilton said he was expecting a stronger challenge from Ferrari in qualifying: “The Ferraris were really quick in P3. I thought they probably had a little bit less fuel than us in P3 so that was why they were so quick. Because I thought our car was looking pretty good so there was quite a big gap there.”

Hamilton said it was a “massive buzz” to score his first pole position for Mercedes.

“As I came round and I got told that I got pole – they told me one my one, Fernando came across the line, Felipe and so on – and they told me I was pole I just had to make sure the radio was off because I was so excited it was such a great feeling.”

“[In] Q1 and Q2 the car was looking great,” he added. “And It’s always such a mental challenge I don’t think anyone can probably comprehend just how much of a challenge it is to go out and do that one lap perfect. It’s right at the end of qualifying. Q2 and Q2, that’s easy But Q3, there’s so much pressure but it’s just fantastic when you do pull it out.”

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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25 comments on “Hamilton wary of threat from Raikkonen and Alonso”

  1. is that the first time that an RBR isnt in the top 2?

    1. Its the first time this year, and its also the first time since 2008 or something that there’s no Red Bull in the top 8.

      1. @bascb Happy days!!

    2. @Hatebreeder First time since Brazil last year.

  2. I don’t think that the order of the first laps will have influence on the race results , it is all about the tyres Lotus and Ferrari seem better than Mercedes in this aspect with Lotus having slightly the edge on Ferrari
    Alonso as always will be flying in the start maybe he can get Kimi who is starting from the dirty side of the grid but overtaking Lewis in the first 2 laps will be difficult giving the high top speed of his Mercedes , his chance for challenging for the lead will be with DRS enabled of course if he can keep up with the pace of Lewis which i expect will be the case giving the F138 performance over long distances

    1. Wasn’t Lotus’ straight line speed relatively good? Kimi said they lose the most time in sector two due to lack of downforce.

  3. Looks like ’07 or ’08! Good riddance Vettel.

    1. Ah, those were the good times.

    2. Good old days!

    3. Was thinking likewise earlier on and I agree, even though I wasn’t around watching the sport at the time.

    4. I read the F1 Fanatic Live transcript, and comments for China 2009 the other day. How everybody was so happy that Vettel won then! Not one bad word. I guess with success come envy and hate.

  4. I’m not concerned about Red Bull’s choice and Mercedes usually has a higher degradation than ours. I’m definitely expecting an interesting race in which the biggest threat could come from Raikkonen as the Lotus has shown it manages its tyres well.”


  5. Kimi: “It makes no difference, because this is what we have and you’d better like it or do something else”

    On the tires..

    That is what everyone should do and stop moaning.. If u want to watch Races with no degradation watch Nascar as Cars with 100 Laps old tire can keep those whose tires are 10 Lap old behind..

  6. That’s going to be one hell of a race start…

  7. OmarR-Pepper (@)
    13th April 2013, 12:50

    this is what we have and you’d better like it or do something else

    Yes Kimi, but if one of these races the cars have to roll down in he final laps at 160 kph just to save tyres, will be a serious joke only compared to the Indy – Michelin disaster

    No cars making attemps in Q3 for 6 minutes is ridiculous!

    1. If that happened then it would probably be worth them pitting again.

    2. It doesn’t need tyres like these to have drivers sit out a lot of the session, its enough to have an evolving track. Just think back to the last time we had rain before qualifying, and then we had a drying out track, people were also waiting for a dry line and got out only then.

      Just be glad we have the 3-tier qualifying format, otherwise we could have been waiting 45 minutes for the first cars to appear out of the pits.

  8. Was Lewis on pole due to a “perfect lap” or was it because he had the faster car? If it was the former, his race prospects dont look so good.

    1. Are this options mutually exclusive? Maybe he has the fastest car and it was a perfect lap.

  9. I am so happy for Lewis! Although I would much have rather it had been Alonso, I´m happy for Lewis because everybody at McLaren said it was a mistake he would regret later on! I can only picture HAM giving Macca 2 big fingers to them! Lol

    1. True, but it’s a long season, and McLaren have shown (eg 2009) that they can turn an uncompetitive car into a race winner by the end of the season. Mercedes have consistently gone backwards over the season every year since they were BAR. By the end of the season things may look rather different.

    2. “I can only picture HAM giving Macca 2 big fingers to them”

      He gave Button a hug after the race.

      1. @nigel1

        He gave Button a hug after the race.

        Ha! An even better way to rub it in!! Think of it as a Pity hug! XD

  10. Good to see three fresh faces after a qualifying, great to see Alonso and Hamilton sporting Kimi’s Oakleys and a rare situation where Kimi forgot his.

  11. Lewis will visit the McLaren pitbox during the race again: “hi, boys! I’m doing fine, how about You?”, hehe.

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