Raikkonen: While they fixed the car I had a sleep

Kimi Raikkonen
Kimi Raikkonen is wheeled into the Lotus pit garage at Jerez

Kimi Raikkonen ended his second day of testing in Barcelona third quickest, but admits he was frustrated as technical glitches with the Lotus E21 meant he spent most of Wednesday morning out of action, but never one to be flustered The Iceman took the opportunity to catch up on some sleep.

Speaking at the end of the second day of Formula 1 preseason testing at Circuit de Catalunya, Raikkonen said, “It’s frustrating and no driver wants to hang around a race track with nothing to do. We had a gearbox issue and it took the crew a long time to fix it.”

So what did he do while mechanics and engineers toiled with his car? “I had a sleep,” replied Raikkonen.

Kimi Raikkonen speaks to media at the end of day two in Barcelona
Kimi Raikkonen speaks to media at the end of day two in Barcelona

“Sometimes these things take a long time and that’s pretty normal when you have a test. The team were very busy working on the car, but there’s not much you can do as a driver when this happens and it’s not great to watch the other cars put lots of laps on the board,” he admitted.

One of the key targets for any team during testing is to rack up as many laps as possible, but for Lotus on Wednesday a gearbox required changing and as a result valuable track time was lost.

However this did not dampen Raikkonen’s spiritis, “When we did get out on track we were immediately the third fastest car out there so that’s always promising. The day was not what we hoped to have but Romain will test the car for the next two days then I will test the car again next week.”

Kimi Raikkonen
Kimi Raikkonen at the wheel of the Lotus E21

Problems in testing are always better than having them at the season opener or beyond as the 2007 world champion explained, “I’d far rather have these problems in testing than in the races. Everyone is busy in the factory making new parts and we will hopefully head to Australia with all the problems ironed out.”

Raikkonen recalled, “Last year we missed all of the second test in Barcelona and the car was still pretty good for the season. It’s frustrating not to get much running today, but it’s not the end of the world.”

Alan Permane, the Lotus team’s trackside operations director added, “Our target was more laps today and we’ve missed that. We were able to diagnose a problem with the gearbox, but rectifying this took quite a lot of time. This severely affected our plans for the day but yet again we were able to show we have a quick car.”