Kimi Raikkonen, Lotus, Singapore, 2013

Raikkonen has “successful” back operation

F1 Fanatic Round-up

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In the round-up: Kimi Raikkonen had a successful operation on his back according to Lotus.



Kimi Raikkonen, Lotus, Singapore, 2013Your daily digest of F1 news, views, features and more.

Lewis: Red Bull down the road (Sky)

“I don’t think I’ve nailed the set-up all year. It’s not nailed this weekend and I don’t think it will be nailed for the rest of the season.”

Heikki Kovalainen: “I was pressing the wrong buttons today quite a few times!” (Adam Cooper’s F1 Blog)

“It was relatively easy to start working with [race engineer Mark Slade] because I know him from McLaren days, and I know how he works. He knows what I need as well, I think if I get lost he can actually make suggestions just by looking at the telemetry, so it?s really helpful.”

The only way is up (F1)

“Q: What has been the best moment of your ‘rookie season’ as deputy team principal?
Claire Williams: Bringing Felipe [Massa] on board. That was kind of my proudest moment. To bring a driver of his calibre to this team when we haven’t delivered the performance – I am very pleased with that. But also bringing Pat Symonds on board and hopefully being able to announce new sponsors soon.”

Lotus says time running out for Quantum (Autosport)

Gerard Lopez: “We have always said that if we want to push we have other options. It has got to be the right partnership. That one seemed like the right one, but whether it is going to happen or not, I don’t know.”

Jenson Button warns 2014 McLaren man Kevin Magnussen of ‘cut-throat F1’ (The Guardian)

“It’s big pressure for a driver coming into McLaren. If he does a good job, great. It starts a very exciting career. for him But if he has a tough season, that could be the end of it as well.”

‘I thought for a second that Bernie was to blame’ (The Telegraph)

“Recounting the robbery on Thursday at the High Court, where [Stephen] Mullens and Ecclestone are co-defendants in a $140 million damages claim brought by German media firm Constantin Medien, Mullens said that he was ready to ‘change my life, give up my practice and leave the country’, so traumatised was he by the experience which happened in April 2009.”

Comment of the day

First practice yesterday was a bit of a mess:

The whole issue with the helicopter was extremely embarrassing.

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Craig and Cduk_Mugello!

If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is by emailling me, using Twitter or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

Happy 40th birthday Christian Horner!

Image ?? Lotus/LAT

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  • 44 comments on “Raikkonen has “successful” back operation”

    1. Hard to believe Horner is only 40. That whole team is young guns.

      Why is lotus updating us on Raikkonen instead of Ferrari? Call me cynical but I think lotus is ready to move on. They may owe some money, but boy did that very successful partnership end on a low note.

      It struck me today that the current crop of cars is really good looking. Much better than any time since 09. Hope next year isn’t too much of a downgrade

      1. @chaddy he’s still a Lotus man until the contract expires and probably there are contractual issues to adress. Maybe promotional events, or showing up somewhere if the surgery goes along well.

        It’d not be ethical in my view for Ferrari to update on a currect member of a rival team.

        1. You’re probably right. I was being sarcastic about Ferrari giving updates since they are only ones a good surgery benefits. Maybe lotus thinks the surgery, and timing, are legitimate, hence the get well soon on the car. Great to see the p5 out of his replacement though.

        2. But is it ethical for Ferrari already to be selling Kimi Räikkönen hats when he is still under contract to Lotus? (Serious question, not rhetorical! I was surprised they could do this.)

          1. Left over stock from 2009 maybe…?

          2. @spinmastermic & @dc :: THOSE ARE LEFTOVER FROM 2009! They also came in white w/ blue lettering and a blue underside to the brim (which I own). Got ’em at a Puma outlet for $3USD/ea. Wish I’d bought all 30 of em instead of just three! lol…

            1. Thanks! But I still think it is odd they are allowed contractually to sell old merchandise. A driver is part of the team’s marketing efforts. You would think there would be clauses in the contract forbidding something like this. What would stop McLaren from selling Lewis Hamilton goodies?

            2. The fact that not many people would buy merch with the wrong team/driver combo.

          3. I don’t know ’cause I’m not a laywer… but that would imply that you shouldn’t be able to by Senna caps, shirts and whatnots either since he’s not in a team anymore.
            Which I really don’t think is the case

      2. Why is it Ferrari’s responsibility to inform the public of Raikkonen’s condition? Raikkonen was injured whilst driving a Lotus and under contract to race for Lotus. There has been a rumor that Ferrari lobbied hard for Raikkonen to have the surgery now so he could start next season in a healthy condition, however, back injuries can be nasty and plague those afflicted for months or even years after their initial recovery. Given that Raikkonen had to have the surgery to alleviate the pain, I doubt anyone had much say in when he could have the surgery.

      3. Easy: how do you behave to people you owe a ******** of cash??

      4. ’cause after the season 2014. with Ferrari it’s most likely he will need a brain surgery as well…

    2. “I don’t think I’ve nailed the set-up all year. It’s not nailed this weekend and I don’t think it will be nailed for the rest of the season.”

      Is Lewis being genuine, or is that just an excuse to explain why Rosberg has been equally fast, if not faster than him this season?

      1. Both are equally worrying for his claim to be the best driver in F1 at the moment @kingshark by colonising the Mercedes team and making it his own. Adaptability is pretty crucial to be successful away from home turf.

        I do however feel there’s no massive disrespect in being close to Rosberg: he’s a good driver.

      2. I think its both.

        He’s not happy, but he don’t know why. Team has been trying to find excuse for him all season long.

        Its normal though. If you think its easy to adapt and be successful right away with new team, you’re clearly delusional.

        1. I would have expected him to be a bit off the pace during the first half of the season, but it’s the fact that he has actually appeared to have gotten slower relative to Rosberg in the second half that is slightly worrying.

      3. you guys seriously need to stop analyzing Hamiltons quotes… Not that it isn’t funny (’cause the point you made was quite fun and comic), it’s just that he has got a case of verbal diarrhea and says anything and everything that pops into his mind.
        Even if he did think he is really faster than Ros (which he probably thinks) he wouldn’t benefit of slandering a guy who is performing equally to him at the moment, so I just think it’s another brainfart of his.
        And I’ve actually started to like Ham more since I started viewing his quotes in this light, he seems more genuine that way.

        (that was all regarding his PR mentality, no mentions of racing capabilities)

        1. But his quotes are so two faced, when he is winning, like after hungary he wasnt talking like this, he was saying how great the car is and that it is a car to fight for the championship in. Setup is mainly up to the driver to nail down. Previous he said vettel is only winning because of the car, now he says he cant set up his, so maybe the merc is as fast as redbull, but merc drivers are not good enough.

          1. After Hungary and in the heat of the moment yes he was stoked about the car…but such has been the nature of this year’s tires that a nailed setup is a fleeting thing and seems to have been the most consistent only for SV.

        2. Not sure I get where there is some sort of slam toward NR here. I think most drivers this year that aren’t SV would say they never went an entire race with their setup nailed, such was the unpredictability of the tires. Maybe a stint or two, or portions of each stint. I think this is a case of, if you are an LH fan then he is explaining something about his season, and of you are not a fan, then he is making excuses.

          Personally I don’t think anyone seriously had LH as WDC this year, and I think Merc has done better than they themselves had hoped given that Ferrari and Lotus were the ones looking to take the fight to RBR this year. And Merc could still end up 4th in the WCC…ie. they have not had a WDC/WCC car this year, so it should be no surprise to hear LH talking about nailing setups (or not).

      4. Well, I know he’s had trouble, but he did nail it at the Hungaroring. It wasn’t the margin of victory Vettel has been enjoying, but a 10 second lead over 2nd place isn’t bad at all.

    3. If Magnussen is really the next big thing, it’s Button who should be worried. Whitsmarth is playing this game with a lot of risk on his own head I think. If Magnussen doesn’t deliver, McLaren should try to get Brawn to plan something better.

      1. @omarr-pepper maybe he’s covering himself. If Magnussen flops, McLaren won’t just kick him out of the door. They took the risk, now they got to hang on it. And they probably know him a lot, and, as JB says, he’s a lot more prepared than JB was.

      2. There is nothing better. The top drivers are all taken and McLaren’s car development has not been great. They’ll likely be conservative in 2014, going back to what they know. But if they can’t get a heavy-hitting driver into the team, then they need to back a promising young rookie.

        McLaren’s approach to young driver development is wildly different to Red Bull’s. Red Bull back anyone who they think can make it, but won’t hesitate to drop them if they feel that driver is not performing. It’s a system that gets quick results because it relies on survival of the fittest (or, in this case, survival of the fastest) to weed out under-performing drivers.

        McLaren, on the other hand, take a much more holistic view of things. Rather than throw all of their young drivers into the Thunderdome, they are much more careful in their selection process. They find young drivers early on, and then work closely with them through the junior tiers. There is a lot more riding on those drivers graduating to Formula 1 because no-one is expendable, but McLaren seem to see their young drivers as a resource to develop, rather than a means to an end than can justifiably be thrown aside once they have been bled dry.

        It will be interesting to see who McLaren start supporting now that Kevin Magnussen has graduated (and even more interesting if they manage to place Stoffel Vandoorne). Nyck de Vries might need a bit more time before he’s ready to graduate, but in the meantime it’s believed that Facu Regalia visited Woking to do some simulator work.

      3. But that is exactly what you are seeing. Button is definitely expressing his own worries here. He is just smart enough to so in very covering way and genuinly nice enough not to ne harsh. He is was obviously much more comfortable having a team mate he can easily beat, than with the prospect of having a new lightning kid like Hamilton, maybe even much better rounded than what Hamilton was (is??)

        1. I doubt JB is worried. He will have utter confidence in himself, and with KM being the one who has everything to prove yet regarding not just pace, but consistent pace, useful feedback, race craft, and most importantly the ability to handle the psychological pressure. And on that topic it has been said that sometimes a rookie does very well psychologically because he has not been through a season such that he would know what to expect. He can’t go wrong in his first year because if he struggles then it’s because he’s a rookie a deserves more time and what do you expect, and if he excels then that’s a bonus. His second year might be the more telling one once he then has a preconceived notion of what is coming and can have things potentially play on his mind. The races will simply have to unfold and it will be a work in progress for JB, KM, Mac, and all the other drivers and teams too.

    4. Off course, he had successful Ferrari come-back operation.

    5. I think Lewis needs some nails to nail the setup ;-) . I mean why does he say for ‘the rest of the season’ ? I know it’s just one more race but still he can be a less frustrated and can concentrate on nailing what ever he wants . I know it’s difficult and I’m nobody to tell him what to do but as a fan it hurts to see him locking up his brakes , getting thumped down every straight and struggling to pass even with DRS . He is doing a great job , but he needs to get the car right . Any technical guys here who have an idea as to why Merc is not able to get the right compromise for Lewis ? Is it driving style related or just different balance requirements or what ?

      1. They found 2 small cracks in his chassis as far as i know.

        Expect it to be fixed for the US GP.

      2. And i thought it was only Jenson who couldn’t set his car up according to comments made on this site lol

      3. I wouldn’t expect anyone to text in a solution for LH’s woes, since we aren’t on the team, and even LH himself has struggled for solutions, but I think it is safe to say a big part of the problem for most teams and drivers has been the unpredictability of the tires. Drivers can’t just go out there and push the cars and try all kinds of things without killing the tires and having to start over again. IMHO, they have to spend too much time monitoring tires like they are passengers in a moving science project. ie. I envision that there is more guesswork with this years tires than the teams generally have ever had to employ.

    6. It’s not really a surprise that Lewis is having issues to be honest. I don’t know what the hell people were expecting moving to a new team and all. When you really think about it, it certainly does put Jenson’s 2010 into perspective.

      1. I have to say it. COTA. Lots of comments during the year commented that Alonso or Hamilton would beat Vettel in a Red Bull. It takes time for a driver, about 6 months, to fit into a team and learn the car.

        1. Alonso won his first race for ferrari and came second by four points in that years championship..

          1. First of all, I wasn’t talking about the whole competition. I was just trying to put into perspective how sometimes it’s difficult for a driver to get to grips with the car and fit into the team perfectly almost immediately. Especially nowdays when setup is making such a big difference and the tyres are all over the place behaving ridiculously.

            Yes, Alonso had a good first year with Ferrari and there’s no denying that. Obviously, I’m not saying that’s impossible. But on the other hand he was also partnering Massa who had missed most of last year and on top of that was coming back from a terrible accident/injury. But if you look at 2007, both Alonso and Lewis who were joining a new team were pretty equally matched. However, it’s worth mentioning that one of them had just been crowned a world champion for the second year in a row and the other was a rookie.

          2. Kimmi won the championship in his first year at Ferrari. Alonso only won the first race because Vettel had car problems.

          3. @fangio85 You could argue that Alonso already had experience with a Ferrari before (see 2007 season for example) ;)

        2. Not all drivers need that time. Alonso and Kimi were on the ball from race 1 at Ferrari.

          Maybe Lewis need time to adjust because he’s only been with one team his entire career, but I cannot agree with your generalised statement

      2. I wasn’t expecting him to be quick right out of the blocks, that is imposing unrealistic expectations. But I thought he would have sorted out his issues by now, such was the way he wan talking his move up.

        It actually appears currently that Rosberg has stepped up his game, not Hamilton.

        1. I agree, Rosberg has definitely been improving.

        2. @vettel1

          Max look at India Ham was with Ros all race he as also been making binding starts yet gets no luck, he passed Nico in india, yet got overtook by 2 cars on the straight. Nico is not making him look silly, what about Japan 1st lap puncture from a great start, no ones fault but the man has had no luck. He would have finished ahead of Ros in Japan thhats for sure. Also his car is bad in traffic look at Abu Dhabi. So were is this Ros as been getting stronger, Korea Ham was 15 seconds ahead of Ros yet Merc left him out which got Ros back into it, Ham as been unlucky. Ham was defo going to out qualify Nico in Abu Dhabi before he binned it aswell. So seriously he is haveing some bad races that is all. Nobody knows how good Nico and Ham are, they could be the best 2 for all we know. No shame in Ham only just being ahead in his first year, Ham will go on a huge run in the next few years you watch for someone who came in the way he did to f1 and then had the season he had last year(how good was he last yr) he is not going to lose that speed over 1 season. Ham is not even in his peak yet should be another year or more, then from 30-33 he needs to capatalise. At the minute the guy is going to be way ahead of all the other 1xWC in stats, probably way ahead of all the 2xWC aswell, i think he already is apart from Alo but that will come. So for all the flack he gets he as still achieved alot, he as been unlucky aswell. And i will agree with 1 thing i think he is not as consistent on pirrelli they really have hurt his carear abit. Yes you have to adapt and hopefully by his peak he will, but no Pirrelli and refuelling back Ham would dominate f1.

      3. Yes Jenson won in his FIRST race for Mclaren and won 2races, better than Hammy in his new team. In fact Jenson had won his 2 races before Hammy 1 for Merc. Not bad for a driver who isn’t rated

        1. Were’nt both races wet? Also did Mclaren have the tyre wear Merc had? Also should it nt be 2 race wins to 1 to Ham V Ros. Seriously what a silly comment.

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