• Singapore Grand Prix - Qualifying

Car better than it looks - Raikkonen

ESPN Staff
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Kimi Raikkonen: "We don't seem to have the speed to challenge the leaders" © Sutton Images
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Kimi Raikkonen is confident his Lotus is better than his 12th place grid slot at this weekend's Singapore Grand Prix suggests.

Raikkonen, a championship challenger, struggled throughout Friday practice and was then a high-profile scalp ahead of the top ten shootout in qualifying. He said the car improved over the weekend and that the 1.9s gap to pole position is not entirely representative.

"The car was much better overall today than it was yesterday," he said. "We were quick with the used tyres but for some reason struggled for grip with the new ones in the second session and we were actually slightly slower. For sure P12 is not the position we wanted; we don't seem to have the speed to challenge the leaders here but the car is definitely quicker than that. We'll see what we can do in the race."

Team-mate Romain Grosjean was eighth fastest on his return after a one-race ban, but said his final lap was a bit scrappy.

"The result is not as good as we wanted, but this is a very hard track to get right and we've been struggling for ultimate grip throughout this weekend so far, so overall it was good to be in Q3. After Q1 and Q2 we felt positive but it didn't quite come together in the final session. I pushed a little bit too hard on my last lap; it felt good in the car, but it wasn't good for my lap time and there was one moment where I lost most quite a lot of time. It was pretty close but I don't think I touched the wall; I'll have to check to see if the Pirelli tyre markings are still there !"

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