Raikkonen says not switching immediately to intermediates in Q3 limited qualifying potential
|By Simon Strang||Saturday, July 7th 2012, 18:15 GMT|
Kimi Raikkonen feels he could have improved on sixth place on the grid for the British Grand Prix if he had switched to intermediate tyres earlier in the final part of qualifying at Silverstone on Saturday.
The Finn, who ran throughout qualifying without the KERS working on his Lotus, said that having only one flying lap on the inters meant that it was difficult to get enough heat into the tyres and that his final lap was also hindered by rain falling again on the Stowe/Club section of the circuit.
"I think we should have probably started with the intermediates in Q3 so we got some more heat in them," he said afterwards. "We only got one lap on them so that probably wasn't ideal but I think we did the best job that we could from that position so...
"It's not ideal if it rains tomorrow because there is a lot of spray but it is what is."
Asked how much time he thought he lost by not switching from full wets to inters earlier, Raikkonen replied: "I don't know. It's one of those things that you cannot say, but for sure it would have been easier when you get more heat in the tyres and you probably can go faster. But it's our choice and it probably wasn't the ideal."
Raikkonen also lost an estimated 0.3s per lap because of the KERS issue, though he admitted that the changeable conditions had reduced the impact of the problem on his performance.
"Probably it doesn't hurt so much because you cannot use it as effectively, but you still get it on the straights," he said. "For sure it is not as bad as in the dry but we have it because it's going to make us faster so...
"I don't know [what the problem was], they [Lotus] probably know the issue by now and they will try to fix it for the race. We tried already twice to change the battery but it wasn't that so it is something else that they have to find. They are allowed to change it if they find an issue."