Raikkonen aims for better start in 2013

By on Monday, March 11, 2013

Lotus F1 Team/LAT Photographic

Kimi Raikkonen has said that he is aiming for a better start to the 2013 than he achieved in 2012.

The Finn finished only seventh, fifth and fourteenth across the first three races of 2012 before bouncing back to finish third in the championship.

"I’d like to start the season strongly and hopefully run the first races better than we did last year.  We don’t know exactly what to expect so we’ll try to do the best we can; we should have a reasonable start to the season," he said.

Raikkonen admits he is unsure whether the Albert Park Street Circuit will play to the strengths of the Lotus E21.

"It’s always difficult to say for the first race of the year. It’s not a full time race track so the weekend starts pretty slippery," he said.

"The weather can be a bit of a surprise sometimes and we’ll also learn how we compare to the other teams. You need a car with good traction and the E21 feels better in this area than the E20 which wasn’t a bad car itself. Strong turn-in and stable braking help too, and those areas also feel good with the car so we are well placed."

The 2007 world champion does not believe that a lack of testing will hinder his progress this season.

"We had some problems in testing but we still completed quite a few laps. Of course, you always want more laps, but it is what it is," he said.

"We’re all going racing and then we’ll really see where we’re at. I’m not really concerned about reliability or anything like that as it was the same problem which caused us the biggest problems in testing and we’re on top of that now. You can never be 100% certain of course, but if you look at last season we had problems before the start of the year then we were pretty good when we got to the races. Of course we hope that we can perform better than last year, but let’s see how it goes."

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