F1: Raikkonen insists he will not race Hamilton any differently for Vettel
Kimi Raikkonen insists he will not race Lewis Hamilton any differently than another driver on the grid in order to have an influence on the drivers’ championship.
Hamilton had the chance to win the title in Austin on Sunday but Raikkonen won from Max Verstappen, delaying confirmation until Mexico at the earliest. At one stage in the race, Hamilton — who had pitted early — was attacking Raikkonen as the Ferrari was yet to pit, and the Finn told his team over the radio “let’s not do anything stupid” in the fight with the championship leader.
MORE FORMULA 1 ON RACER.COM
“For sure my purpose is not to be any more aggressive against him than anybody else,” Raikkonen said. “I don’t believe in doing crazy things. I want to do my race and do the best that I can do. If that impacts the championship then that’s how it is but I will not do any crazy stuff to be a part of it.
“My job is purely to try to win, I’m here for that and I will play as fair as is possible and that’s how it’s going to be and how it’s always going to be. We know what is fair and what is not and I got a bit close once because I lost a bit of grip but there was nothing crazy going on.”
Raikkonen also has a chance of finishing third in the drivers’ championship, while Ferrari retains an outside shot at the constructors’ title, but Raikkonen is not fixating on any specific targets in the remaining three races.
“I can only do my best. Whatever the end result is, that’s how it’s going to play out. For sure, if we have a chance to fight for a championship I will do my job and that would be absolutely perfect for all of us but we can only do our best.
“I said that before the race and before many races and whatever the end result is, that was our best and if [in Austin] we would be second or third, it wouldn’t really feel too bad because I knew that I did the best I could and it was like this so I’m happy about it.
“We’ll go next weekend and try to do the best that we can. We keep fighting until the last race and then we see what happens after that.”
FOR THE BEST IN RACING NEWS, COMMENTARY AND MORE VISIT RACER.COM
ABOUT CHRIS MEDLAND
While studying Sports Journalism at the University of Central Lancashire, Chris managed to talk his way into working at the British Grand Prix in 2008 and was retained for three years before joining ESPN F1 as Assistant Editor. After three years at ESPN, a spell as F1 Editor at Crash Media Group was followed by the major task of launching F1i.com’s English-language website and running it as Editor. Present at every race since the start of 2014, he has continued building his freelance portfolio, working with international titles. As well as writing for RACER, he contributes to BBC 5Live and Sky Sports in the UK as well as working with titles in Japan and the Middle East.