• United States Grand Prix

Raikkonen bemoans cloud cover

ESPN Staff
November 19, 2012 « Ferrari defends Massa's grid drop | Third constructors' title 'remarkable' - Horner »
Kimi Raikkonen lost out to Fernando Alonso after a slow pit stop and finished 25 seconds behind the Ferrari © Sutton Images

Kimi Raikkonen said a drop in temperatures due to cloud cover prevented him from holding off Jenson Button as his tyres dropped off.

The Lotus has notoriously been better in hot conditions, and Raikkonen highlighted the importance of higher temperatures during qualifying as he secured fourth on the grid. However, while running fifth in the race, some scattered cloud in the closing laps saw temperatures drop and Raikkonen said it left him powerless to defend against Button as he struggled to keep the tyres working.

"It was an okay day, but not a very easy one for us," Raikkonen said. "I got a bad start and then I touched with a Force India at the second corner so I lost a few more places. After that the car was okay and I could get past some of the others.

"Unfortunately, when it got cloudy it got too cold so the tyres stopped working and that's where we saw Jenson [Button] get past. Basically, it was a race where we were just depending on the tyres to be in their window. I'm still 3rd in the championship and we'll do everything we can to maintain this position until the end."

Prior to that, Raikkonen had been ahead of Fernando Alonso but technical director James Allison confirmed he lost out due to a slow pit stop.

"After a tricky start from the dirty side of the track, Kimi did a good job of clawing his way forwards and was on course to jump Fernando [Alonso] in the pit stop battle, but unfortunately we had a bit of a drama with our tyre change which put paid to that," Allison said. "On a more positive note, our qualifying pace has certainly improved so with a trouble free race in Brazil we can hopefully wrap up the season with another podium."

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