Hungarian GP - "But was it really me?"
In bright sunny and very hot weather, Kimi Raikkonen strolled up the steps of the Hungaroring media centre to face the press in his first press conference of the weekend. Like other Finnish drivers, the Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro driver regards this as something of a home race. "It is the closest thing we have to one anyway," he said. "We usually get a lot of Finnish people here. It's easy to come and they have lots of different opportunities to come, and it's always nice to see them."
With a pole position here last year and a win from fourth on the grid in 2005, Raikkonen has a good record here. "But I don't know what to expect this year," he admitted. "It's a bit different to many other circuits, probably a bit more like Monaco but I think we have made some progress and we should be stronger than we were in Monaco, but we will really see tomorrow how the car works here. We've got some new parts from the test last week so I think they are going to help because it's quite bumpy here and we need to go over the kerbs, so hopefully it helps us."
The Ferrari man refuses to give up in terms of his championship chances. "I am not any further away from the leader than before the last race," he explained. "We had a bad result but we didn't get further away in the points so. In the last race many things happened and suddenly some people gain many points on the leader and some people not. But there are still many races so we keep pushing and if we can keep the speed that we have had in the last five races I think still we have every chance. We know we can be fast but it is too early to say, although technically we are pushing to improve the reliability."
Inevitably, Kimi was asked about the conflict in the courts with another team. "I haven't really followed it too much apart from what I hear from other people and I don't really want to get involved, so it doesn't matter if I like it or not," was his view. "What I think isn't going to change things so I just follow what happens and there is people who make decisions. I guess for everything there is a reason so we will see what happens in the future. For sure we are going to push as hard as we can to win races and fight for every victory, every point. That's the only way of racing. We are not waiting to gain some advantage in any other way. That is completely different story and we keep racing as before. So hopefully we can catch up."
Finally, an amusing story appeared in the media that Raikkonen had attended a boat race wearing a gorilla suit! "Yes, but was it really me?" he laughed when quizzed about it. But he did admit to winning! "We've got the trophy already. It was just a boat race and we just went for fun."