Kimi Raikkonen knows qualifying is key to a good performance at the Hungaroring, while Romain Grosjean is feeling positive after Germany…
Kimi Raikkonen knows qualifying is key to a good performance at the Hungaroring, while Romain Grosjean is feeling positive after Germany.
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What makes a good weekend in Hungary?
I have finished second in Hungary too many times, so I know how important it is to lead the race after the first corner. DRS or not, it’s never easy to overtake at the Hungaroring. To get the weekend right, you have to have good sessions in FP1, FP2 and FP3, then a strong qualifying session and finally a perfect start to the race.
But your only win here came in 2005 starting from fourth on the grid?
I got a very good start to be second at the end of the first lap and everything went well from there.
What’s the atmosphere like?
It is always nice to go to Hungary. The circuit is not the most difficult of them all, but it is a really challenging venue as it’s usually very hot which makes it a demanding race. Of course, the heat has helped us with the car so far this year so that will make things better, but only if it’s a win will you not suffer from the heat.
What are the key elements to a fast car at the Hungaroring?
A fast car. It’s such a slow, twisty circuit, so two things are really important there; good turn-in and good traction. If you have those, you have a strong car for the race.
How do you ensure a good start?
Obviously you need to get to the front in the qualifying, but also avoid the dirty side of the track on the grid. When you look back through the races this season, it seems the dirty side of the track is a real disadvantage in the starts.
In some ways this is viewed as a ‘home’ Grand Prix for you?
Many times Hungary has been called as the Grand Prix of Finland. A lot of Finns go to this race every year and it is always nice to see the blue and white flags waving.
Any more thoughts after your second place in the German Grand Prix?
The points were good and we had a strong car. Again we saw that warmer temperatures suited us and we usually get hot weather in Budapest so that should be a good thing. Of course, you never know until you have driven the track in this year’s car. In Germany, my radio wasn’t working properly and I got stuck behind the Mercedes which didn’t help my race. The performance of the cars was pretty close and it’s easier to overtake at the N