junio 10, 2005

No regrets over Nurburgring failure

Kimi RaikkonenNo regrets over Nurburgring failure
Racer Kimi Raikkonen vows to push on

Kimi Raikkonen insisted in Montreal that he has no regrets over gambling a points scoring finish at the European Grand Prix despite rivals' claims that he made a mistake.

Raikkonen lost vital ground on championship leader Fernando Alonso two weeks ago when he chose not to change a damaged tyre and crashed out of the lead of the Nurburgring race on the final lap following a last lap suspension failure. The Finn is now 32 points behind Alonso but asked if, in retrospect, he would do things differently, he said: "No, I don't think so. In the end we need to try to gain more points than Alonso and he was behind me."

"I didn't see any reason to come in and change the tyre and lose points to him because we were in a position to score maybe two points more. We took the gamble and it didn't pay off, but I would still do the same thing."

Rubens Barrichello believes Raikkonen was wrong to stay out and claims he should have pitted and settled for a safe second rather than risking all for victory.

"If it was me driving that car I would most certainly have stopped," said Barrichello. "Not because it was dangerous and I am afraid to have a crash or die or something like this, but just because it was not going to work. It's your call, you are driving the car, you know how dangerous it is or not and sometimes in life you have to go backwards to go ahead, so I think it would have been better to get eight points."

The incident, which saw Raikkonen pitched into a high-speed spin when his suspension broke under pressure from massive vibrations, brought the new tyre rules into the spotlight. Teams can no longer change tyres during the race and are forced to suffer a penalty if they choose to replace a badly damaged one for safety reasons, a dilemma Raikkonen's McLaren team faced at the Nurburgring.

McLaren bosses called for an investigation into the regulation after the incident but Renault team boss Flavio Briatore, who saw Alonso benefit from Raikkonen's crash to take the win, believes it is all part of the game.

"We do not want to see people hurt, of course, but managing risks is part of the sport and it is why people like Formula One," said Briatore. "Fernando drove the better race because he did not have any difficulties. Sometimes you have the chance to win and sometimes you can win by making your rivals lose. The latter is what we did in the last race because we knew there might be problems and we worked around that."

Barrichello also believes the sport has benefited by the new rules. "They allow some overtaking and it seems that the public like it a little bit more. It has been better in terms of a show."

Raikkonen, however, believes there needs to be a clarification. "It is a bit difficult to know how bad a tyre needs to be before you are allowed to change it without being penalised. Nobody really knows. Now they say afterwards that it was bad enough but how could we know that before? But then racing is always dangerous. It was my decision, I could have come in if I had wanted so I'm not complaining."


ese es al Kimi que yo le voy!! :D