Raikkonen blames inexperience on Pirelli tyres for modest Malaysia result

29th March 2012

Lotus driver Kimi Raikkonen has blamed a lack of experience on the new Pirelli tyres in Formula One as a factor behind his fifth place finish in the Malaysia Grand Prix.

The former World Champion has made a promising start to qualifying, after clocking up the fifth fastest time on Saturday.

However, the Finn then suffered a five-place grid penalty, following a gearbox change on the Friday, with Raikkonen then dropping to 13th place during the race.

The 32-year-old soon showed his experience though, with some smooth driving and excellent tactical pit stops seeing the driver climb up the standings to finish in fifth place.

Despite the credible performance though, Raikkonen admitted he remained somewhat rusty and had yet to get to grips with the new tyres debuted by Pirelli this season.

“I was a bit handicapped because I didn’t know how the tyres would behave,” he said,

“It was my first time on the wet weather Pirellis and I didn’t know how the intermediate or wet tyres would react."

The fifth place finish remained a credible result for Raikkonen, who only returns to the sport a couple of months ago.

Posted by Danielle Barge