Abu Dhabi

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2 Felipe Massa
3 Valtteri Bottas

Lotus want Kimi back on the podium

Wednesday 4th September 2013

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Lotus want Kimi back on the podium

Lotus want Kimi back on the podium

Lotus team principal Eric Boullier admits the squad need to make sure that Kimi Raikkonen suffers no further DNFs if he is to stay alive in the fight for the title.

The 33-year-old was forced to retire with a brake problem last time out in Belgium, bringing to an end his record of 27 grands prix inside the points while it was also his first DNF since 2009.

To add insult to injury, Championship leader Sebastian Vettel won the race at Spa to leave fourth-placed Raikkonen 63 points adrift.

Boullier knows the team needs to make sure the Finn gets back on the podium as quickly as possible.

"We need to get Kimi back on the podium and consistently," he said. "His DNF in Spa was the first he has had with Lotus F1 Team and we certainly don't want to see any more this season.

"He's been on the podium six times so far this year and there are eight races remaining. We all know that the gap to Sebastian [Vettel] is not getting any smaller, but behind Seb the battle is quite tight as we've seen over the last few races."

It remains to be seen if Raikkonen will stay at Lotus next as he has warned the squad that he won't enter into contract negotiations until have sorted out a few "issues".

"Kimi wants to be assured that we have everything in place to tackle the significant changes we will see in the sport next year," Boullier said. "We're working hard to assure him that Lotus F1 Team is where he should be and piece by piece we are getting all our ducks in a row.

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