Fred Vasseur "had his fingers crossed" hoping Raikkonen's engine would last

15-04-2019 18:23
by Nicolás Quarles van Ufford
General
Fred Vasseur had his fingers crossed hoping Raikkonen's engine would last

Alfa Romeo Racing team principal Fred Vasseur has admitted he was crossing his fingers during the Chinese Grand Prix when looking at Kimi Raikkonen's car, as the Finn's power unit wasn't certain to make it to the end.

Raikkonen missed out on Q3 for the first time this season but did well to finish within the points, with the veteran ending up in P9, adding to his and the team's points tally. Both him and the team sit on 12 points now, with teammate Antonio Giovinazzi not getting on the board just yet.

Ferrari's power units had a bug in them, which the Italians offered to fix on Alfa's engines as well, but they refused as they didn't have enough time to implement it into the C38. This might not have been the right call, however, as Giovinazzi ended up being sidelined for both FP2 and qualifying. Raikkonen's engine held up, but Vasseur admitted he was nervous about the reliability of the former champion's car.

"I had my fingers crossed on the pit wall," he told Motorsport.com.

"It was not easy to push on the buttons! I think overall it was a good Sunday for us, we had a good recovery compared to yesterday."

Raikkonen scoring points again for the team left Vasseur in a very good mood, confirming that the Finn was a good pick-up for Alfa.

"He's scoring points, even when he's starting 13th," Vasseur said.

"He was a bit upset not to be able to catch Ricciardo and Perez at the end, which is a good sign!

"The pace was there, and I think we were even able to catch Ricciardo and Perez, but we had some small damage 10 laps before the end on the front.

"We also lost temperature in the front tyres, mainly due to the fact that we lost downforce."

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