Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari, Bahrain International Circuit, 2018

Raikkonen quickest, then stopped by wheel problem

2018 Bahrain Grand Prix second practice

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Kimi Raikkonen headed team mate Sebastian Vettel by nine-thousandths of a second in second practice in Bahrain, but had to stop his car 15 minutes before the session ended.

The team suspected his front-right wheel hadn’t been fitted properly when he pitted for soft tyres during his long run. Raikkonen pulled over at turn three.

The Ferrari pair were comfortably clear of the two Mercedes drivers by half a second. However neither Lewis Hamilton nor Valtteri Bottas appeared to get trouble-free runs in on their super-soft tyres. Hamilton was delayed by Kevin Magnussen at the end of his best lap.

Bottas, meanwhile, was getting in the way of other drivers. He had a near-miss with Daniel Ricciardo at turn four, seemingly unaware the Red Bull was bearing down on him.

The two Red Bull drivers were even closer to each other than the Ferraris. Max Verstappen, despite being frustrated by his car’s straight line speed, pipped Ricciardo by eight-thousandths of a second.

Half a second behind the Red Bulls came three cars separated by a few hundredths. Nico Hulkenberg headed the midfield in his Renault, but that place was nearly taken by Pierre Gasly whose Toro Rosso looked quick for the second session in a row. Team mate Brendon Hartley was at the bottom of the times.

The Williams and Sauber drivers joined Hartley in the bottom five. Among them was Marcus Ericsson, who suffered a spin at turn three early in the session.

Pos. No. Driver Car Best lap Gap Laps
1 7 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1’29.817 32
2 5 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1’29.828 0.011 37
3 77 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1’30.380 0.563 31
4 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1’30.472 0.655 32
5 33 Max Verstappen Red Bull-TAG Heuer 1’30.745 0.928 32
6 3 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-TAG Heuer 1’30.751 0.934 31
7 27 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1’31.220 1.403 34
8 10 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso-Honda 1’31.232 1.415 38
9 14 Fernando Alonso McLaren-Renault 1’31.282 1.465 29
10 2 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren-Renault 1’31.422 1.605 35
11 8 Romain Grosjean Haas-Ferrari 1’31.591 1.774 33
12 55 Carlos Sainz Jnr Renault 1’31.601 1.784 34
13 31 Esteban Ocon Force India-Mercedes 1’31.809 1.992 31
14 11 Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1’31.868 2.051 34
15 20 Kevin Magnussen Haas-Ferrari 1’31.969 2.152 35
16 16 Charles Leclerc Sauber-Ferrari 1’32.372 2.555 37
17 18 Lance Stroll Williams-Mercedes 1’32.382 2.565 30
18 35 Sergey Sirotkin Williams-Mercedes 1’32.474 2.657 37
19 9 Marcus Ericsson Sauber-Ferrari 1’32.733 2.916 32
20 28 Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso-Honda 1’32.908 3.091 38

Second practice visual gaps

Kimi Raikkonen – 1’29.817

+0.011 Sebastian Vettel – 1’29.828

+0.563 Valtteri Bottas – 1’30.380

+0.655 Lewis Hamilton – 1’30.472

+0.928 Max Verstappen – 1’30.745

+0.934 Daniel Ricciardo – 1’30.751

+1.403 Nico Hulkenberg – 1’31.220

+1.415 Pierre Gasly – 1’31.232

+1.465 Fernando Alonso – 1’31.282

+1.605 Stoffel Vandoorne – 1’31.422

+1.774 Romain Grosjean – 1’31.591

+1.784 Carlos Sainz Jnr – 1’31.601

+1.992 Esteban Ocon – 1’31.809

+2.051 Sergio Perez – 1’31.868

+2.152 Kevin Magnussen – 1’31.969

+2.555 Charles Leclerc – 1’32.372

+2.565 Lance Stroll – 1’32.382

+2.657 Sergey Sirotkin – 1’32.474

+2.916 Marcus Ericsson – 1’32.733

+3.091 Brendon Hartley – 1’32.908

Drivers more then ten seconds off the pace omitted.

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2018 Bahrain Grand Prix

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Author information

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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26 comments on “Raikkonen quickest, then stopped by wheel problem”

  1. So the wheel gun disease has affected all the Ferrari teams…

  2. Something wrong with Hartley car? Or Gasly really that good?

    1. Brendan Hartley is saving fuel, impressive efficiency.

      1. Haha, touché!

      2. Yawn

    2. Gasly was running an updated aero package which they were doing comparison runs on. Hartley didn’t get to do a representative quick run.
      They will both have the same aero from Saturday.

    3. I’m sure STR is behind this.

  3. ”The team suspected his front-right wheel hadn’t been fitted properly when he pitted for soft tyres during his long run. Raikkonen pulled over at turn three.”
    – When will they learn not to repeat the same easily avoidable errors, LOL? Why won’t the teams ever learn from either their own nor the other teams’ similar type of mistakes?

  4. If you’re concerned Raikkonen’s apparent unsafe release might lead to a grid penalty, note in the past 5 years no driver has had a grid penalty for an unsafe release during a practice session.

    For example, Hamilton in Germany two years ago.

    1. @keithcollantine, PEDANT alert, but I make the RBR gap .006 not .008.

  5. Three times Vettel tried to beat Raikkonen during the 2nd practice, and three times he failed.
    Mercedes look weak.

    1. Wasn’t his run on the Softs faster?

      1. Justin (@boombazookajd)
        6th April 2018, 22:00

        His run on softs blew Kimi out of the water. Kimi did improve on SS’s something like .8, Seb finding less time than Kimi on the SS tire. Seb’s race pace was also superior to Kimi.

        This as been covered ad nauseam; the car currently favors Kimi, unlike it has the past 3 years. Seb doesn’t (or hasn’t, until now) had the back end that he prefers as he has a driving style that favors a planted back end that allows him to huck the car into the corner whereas Kimi prefers smoother (less) input and a responsive front end.

        They are both extremely talented drivers and right now, Kimi has the car he prefers but it won’t take long for Seb (and Ferrari) to dial in the rear end of his car and I think, personally, this is the best car Maranello has had. It seems like it can work all of the tires and has a pretty neutral handling characteristic. Now it’s just up to the team to dial in the back end for Seb’s liking without over-doing it and ruining Kimi’s feel for the front end.

        If they do that, both drivers will be very hard to beat and this could end up being Ferrari’s year…but….long, long season ahead yet.

    2. Slower in fp1 also. I think Kimi likes this car, so might deliver.

      1. Yes, maybe a victory for raikkonen this year, might be his last chance, he’s soon 39 and rarely has a car he likes.

  6. Immediately after FP2 Sky interviewed Toto Wolff, Mercedes are sure that Ferrari were running aggressive engine modes for the quick laps from their data. Toto was not overly concerned about one lap pace difference. Red Bull with Verstappen were the fastest on long run pace. Shaping up to be an interesting weekend!

    1. Justin (@boombazookajd)
      6th April 2018, 22:04

      That’s odd, that seems to fly in the face of what Sky mentioned during their broadcast. What were Max’s times compared to Ferrari? Especially when Max complained about being slow down the straights on low fuel…how does that correspond to a fast race pace time with kilo’s of fuel on board?

  7. Archit (@architjain07)
    6th April 2018, 18:06

    Tyre info please SkyF1 and Liberty Media! This just doesnt make any sense!

    1. @architjain07 Exactly. You’d think F1 being the pinnacle of technology this would be basic info easily given out, but apparently not.

  8. Umar A (@umartajuddin)
    6th April 2018, 19:18

    Oh the irony of Mclaren being behind Toro Rosso.

    1. Free practice, take it with a grain of salt, for example ferrari half a sec faster than mercedes too!

  9. I think that the current Ferrari gap to Mercedes is not enough to beat them on Q3, but at least it looks that hey might be closer to them than Australia. Maybe they have a chance on race pace to upset their race plans without needing luck on safety cars etc.

    1. I think Ferrari has the edge on this circuit. If I had to predict, I’d say it’s a front row lockout for Ferrari.

  10. I do believe Ferrari are practising for the cruel little trick they will play on Kimi if he looks like he’s well on the way to trouncing their precious Seb in the race!!!

    1. Why not let raikonnen win if he is in the lead. It’s the beginning of the season, i think WDC doesn’t matter until the european races, then they will see who’s no.1 or no.2

  11. And thats another weekend dominated by Kimi then, hes really on top form this year.

Comments are closed.