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Lotus: 'We're sorry Kimi'

2013-07-03 07:31

POOR STRATEGY COSTS KIMI: Lotus apologised to Kimi Raikkonen for a poor race strategy at Silverstone. Hopefully it won’t lead to the ‘Iceman’ switching teams.Image: AP

LONDON, England - Lotus have apologised to Kimi Raikkonen for a poor strategy call that denied the veteran a likely podium at the 2013 British Grand Prix.

Team principal Eric Boullier, who is facing a tug-of-war with Red Bull for Raikkonen's services in 2014, recognised in a preview for the 2013 German Grand Prix that his team got it wrong.

‘NO POINT IN SULKING’

Boullier said: “Our strategy was great until the last safety car. We should have called Kimi in to save at least one position and make the podium. Unfortunately we made the wrong call for which we apologised to Kimi and to the team.

"It was pretty obvious with hindsight that we made the wrong call. No team can say they make the correct call on every occasion, whether in race strategy, car design philosophy or any other aspect of the sport.
 
"Kimi was pretty frustrated when he got out of the car which is understandable - we wouldn't want a driver who wasn't frustrated after what happened - but there's no point sitting in the corner sulking; we're focused on getting a good result in Germany."

Raikkonen finished fifth at Silverstone but could have finished higher had the team called for fresh medium tyres when the safety car was deployed 11 laps from the end, rather than keeping him out on hard tyres.

Boullier was sure the former Ferrari and McLaren driver would not let a single incident influence his career decision and remained hopeful Lotus could convince him he was better off with them.

‘KIMI SEEMS TO LIKE LOTUS’

Boullier said: "One of his psychological strengths is that he clearly lets you know when he's upset about something, then he refocuses and gets on with the next challenge very quickly.

"He seems to like being with the Lotus F1 Team and we're doing everything we can to show him this is the place to be for next season and beyond."

On the plus side, Raikkonen set a record of 25 consecutive points finishes - although the 'Iceman' dismissed that in characteristic fashion.

Raikkonen said: "It makes no difference to the championship so I'm really not interested in that."
 


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