Raikkonen frustrated by Q3 traffic after narrow pole miss

2017 Russian Grand Prix

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Kimi Raikkonen said he was compromised by traffic during the build-up to his final qualifying lap after his team mate beat him to pole position by less than five hundredths of a second.

The Ferrari drivers used different tactics for their final runs during Q3. Sebastian Vettel elected to do an extra lap to prepare his tyres while Raikkonen did a single flying lap straight out of the pits.

Qualifying in pictures
Vettel was the first driver to leave the pits for the final run, giving him more space on the track. However Raikkonen left the pits between Esteban Ocon’s Force India and Felipe Massa’s Williams.

“I was disappointed that we ended up having a bit of traffic,” said Raikkonen. “I think everybody knows that here you get the tyres working or it’s a massive difference how the lap time pans out but we ended up having a bit of traffic on our out lap on our last try.

Raikkonen believed pole position would have been possible with an uncompromised run. “It was enough to make it a little bit tricky,” he said. “I’m happy with second place but we had everything for doing even better.”

“We did what we planned today,” Raikkonen added. “I wasn’t angry with anybody.” After qualifying he told his team on the radio “this has to stop”.

Vettel experimented with running two laps earlier in the session. “We evaluated two different things Q2, we did one run with only one lap and another run with two laps and I wanted to push the limit on the first one and on the second one,” he explained.

2017 Russian Grand Prix

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    18 comments on “Raikkonen frustrated by Q3 traffic after narrow pole miss”

    1. He ran wide on the last corner and a had a sub-par final sector. Other than that he’d probably have had pole. But none of that was down to traffic.

      1. MG421982 (@)
        29th April 2017, 20:20

        Exactly, just lame excuses. Now they started to complain about the traffic from the out lap too…

      2. But Kimi had traffic during his out-lap, which made it more difficult for him to set-up proper temperature to the tires. Which caused lack of grip in 3rd sector, which cost some time in 3rd sector resulting in a ‘sub-par’ sector. It all makes sense.

        1. Nice to see someone who knows what happens ;-)

          1. Exactly:) Kimi was very close to.getting it this time. Even his crew agrees it wasn’t his mistake.

    2. Same story as Max last GP. These tyres are so sensitive in qualy.

    3. Actually, it was Vettel who was affected by traffic – in this case a Red Bull – during his first flying lap in Q3. He abandoned it and after crossing the line with less than 20 seconds to spare, tried again….and got pole.

      1. No. He did what Mercedes did – out-lap, pre-fast lap, the fast lap, the in-lap. He was held up (if he was held up) by Red Bull on the pre-fast lap as shown by the fact he was already a second or two down by the time he got to the Red Bull.

        1. No. The red bull came right in front of him from the pits. Hence he aborted that lap.

          1. Sviatoslav (@)
            30th April 2017, 9:05

            NO! Red Bull didn’t hinder Vettel!!! Vettel was able to turn into corner without anyone in front!

            1. The RBR did not block him, but still affected VET’s lap. VET didn’t take T2 perfectly and quickly after that slowed down and demoted his timed lap to a second warm-up lap.

    4. He can make up for it with a win tomorrow.

    5. Incredible picture. Very nice.

    6. I don’t buy it personally. His lap was great save the second last and last corner. Just Kimi being Kimi.

      1. @fletch You’re wrong his lap wasnt great. He lost time in the first and second sector. He was fastest in sector 3.

    7. The reason I cannot buy Raikkonen’s claim is because he missed being on pole position because of an error that he committed himself – not due to any third party. That sort of thing happens in qualifying for every position in every race – not just the pole. A driver may find himself short of the position he expected or hoped to achieve because he was not fast enough in the first sector, went wide in the second or locked-up his tyres in the third etc. Therefore, during a battle for pole position, the driver who eventually gets it almost always deserves it…..and in this case it was Vettel and not Raikkonen.

      1. Vettel deserved the pole, no doubt. However, I can believe Raikkonen’s claim because his final lap up until sector 2 was almost 0.2 slower than Vettel’s. It’s possible that Kimi just wasn’t fast enough, but his claim makes senseat least.

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