Raikkonen: Mattiacci is a very nice guy who wants to make a difference

KImi Raikkonen with fans at Red Bull Ring

KImi Raikkonen with fans at Red Bull Ring

Speaking during a Ferrari media call ahead of the Austrian Grand Prix weekend at Red Bull Ring, Kimi Raikkonen was full of praise for Ferrari’s newly instated Team Principal Marco Mattiacci, whom he believes is capable of “making a difference” despite his inexperience in Formula 1.

Raikkonen told journalists, “Everybody has their own way of doing things and it’s early days for Marco. He is a very nice guy who really wants to make a difference. These are good signs and there is a lot of work going on behind the scenes. I think sometimes it can be a good thing when someone comes in from outside Formula 1 with a different view of things. I expect that he can do a very good job.”

2003 Austrian GP  podium (L to R) Kimi Raikkonen (second) Michael Schumacher (winner) and Rubens Barrichello (third)

2003 Austrian GP podium (L to R) Kimi Raikkonen (second) Michael Schumacher (winner) and Rubens Barrichello (third)

With regards to the Austrian Grand Prix weekend, as one of only four drivers on this year’s grid who have previously raced at the circuit now known as the Red Bull Ring, Raikkonen was in good spirits to be at the venue where he finished second, 11 years ago when Formula 1 last roared through the hills of Spielberg

“First of all I have to say I like racing in Europe!” the Scuderia Ferrari driver told media. “This is a nice place to come and they seem to have built a lot of new facilities. I have good memories of this circuit and I think the track makes for pretty good racing. The layout means you can overtake and so I am very happy to be here. I think this circuit should suit us better than Canada, which, along with Bahrain, was the most difficult for us. But at the moment, I am just guessing. We must wait and see what happens [in practice].” (GP247)