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HomeF1Raikkonen’s attribute cool shines by means of in Cup debut

Raikkonen’s attribute cool shines by means of in Cup debut


Method 1 world champion Kimi Raikkonen approached his NASCAR Cup debut with the identical calmness that grew to become his trademark all through his profession, and he tailored shortly to the sequence on Sunday at Watkins Glen Worldwide, even blocking common season champion Chase Elliott at one level through the 90-lap Go Bowling at The Glen.

“I believed he did nice,” Elliott mentioned. “He was proper in the midst of the mess there and regarded like he was proper at dwelling, so I believed that was actually cool.”

Coming into the occasion, Raikkonen was sensible. He knew he may have a nasty day in addition to an excellent one and he skilled each on the two.45-mile street course earlier than a wreck sidelined him after 44 laps.

“I don’t know what occurred in entrance of the automotive,” Raikkonen mentioned calmly after strolling out of the infield care middle. “I had an excellent line going there. All of them pushed kinda of proper inside. I saved (my) tight line. Once they instructed me that somebody spun in entrance of the vehicles everyone type of got here left and hit me on the aspect. There was nothing I may have accomplished.

“The primary hit on my automotive spun the wheel in my arms. One thing went improper within the wrist, however I’ll repair it once I get again dwelling. It’s part of the sport.”

Raikkonen — the primary driver in Trackhouse Racing’s PROJECT91 program designed to carry worldwide drivers to the NASCAR Cup Collection — certified his Chevrolet twenty seventh. A rainstorm that moved by means of the realm at race time resulted within the vehicles beginning on rain tires and Raikkonen’s expertise on a moist observe paid off. He wanted solely 4 laps to crack the highest 20 and by lap 10 he had maneuvered his method into the highest 15. Three laps after taking on 14th, Raikkonen’s crew referred to as him to pit street to vary the tires to slicks, these utilized in dry climate. When Stage 1 ended on lap 20, Raikkonen was nineteenth.

Raikkonen, right here chatting with TrackHouse Racing teammate Daniel Suarez, loved his Cup debut however isn’t but certain whether or not he’d take into account one other, Motorsport Photographs

When Stage 2 started, Raikkonen was tenth and on lap 24 he had taken over ninth place. He ran as excessive as eighth earlier than a pit cease with three laps remaining in Stage 2 shuffled him again to twenty eighth. He restarted the ultimate Stage in twenty second, however the four-car incident on lap 45 during which he was concerned with Austin Dillon, Ross Chastain and Loris Hezemans ended the Finland native’s day.

Raikkonen mentioned he loved “every thing” in regards to the NASCAR Cup expertise, however he didn’t know if he would take into account returning for one more race.

“I’ve nothing towards it,” the 42-year-old Raikkonen mentioned. “It was all good and so they have been very good and useful. We simply ended up on the improper place.

“I felt we had excellent velocity, particularly after the pit stops, however possibly I used to be a bit too harsh on tires on one of many units.”

Nonetheless, Raikkonen’s fast adaptation confirmed the Subsequent Gen automotive positively makes it simpler for drivers from different sequence to enter NASCAR’s high stage.



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