• Lotus

Raikkonen a no-show on Thursday in Abu Dhabi

ESPN Staff
October 31, 2013 « Coulthard donuts on Burj Al Arab Helipad | Love of racing motivating Vettel »
Kimi Raikkonen did not show up in Abu Dhabi on Thursday. © Sutton Images

Kimi Raikkonen did not make an appearance in Abu Dhabi for Thursday's media sessions ahead of this weekend's grand prix.

Lotus' official line was that he was "delayed" on his way to the circuit but could not say whether he would arrive in time for his usual press briefing. By the evening he had not showed up, although it is not unusual for Raikkonen to skip the Thursday of a grand prix weekend after he called in sick at Spa-Francorchamps this year and also during a day of pre-season testing in Barcelona. On each occasion he has missed a Thursday with Lotus he has made it to the track in time for Friday's first practice session.

Raikkonen will leave Lotus for Ferrari next year and at the last race in India had a disagreement with the team after he did not make it easy for Romain Grosjean to pass for position despite being on much older tyres. The team came over the radio and said "Kimi, get the f**k out of the way!"

Team principal Eric Boullier has since apologised for the language used: "With hindsight, this radio message could have been sent in a less emotional way. There was a lot of tension, a lot of potential technical problems, and some of the words that flew around were simply not appropriate. I know that quite a few people were surprised and I can only apologise for that on behalf of the team. It won't happen again."