|Circuit||Yas Marina Circuit|
|Distance||305,355 / 189,779 miles|
Maurizio Arrivabene: “Kimi drove a very good race today, as I expected him to do, and Seb charged from fifteenth on the grid to fourth place across the finish line. This is a result which wraps up a bit the whole season. Already at the first test last winter, we had had some positive feedback: but then we also knew that we had a mountain to climb, and the guys in the team did it step by step, both at the circuits and at the factory. It’s a whole team effort we were able to put on, with everybody working hard to improve. A big thanks to all of them, they’ve been fantastic and deserve the highest grades! Special thanks to our President, who never stopped pushing and supporting us from behind the curtains. Now we know that we face an even bigger challenge for next year, not only catching up on our rivals but also trying to stay ahead of them.”
Kimi Raikkonen: “It has been a nice and clean weekend, the car was handling well and we had no issues. In the race I was pretty happy with the speed and everything ran smoothly . We only had a small delay in the pit stops, which dropped us off a bit and we did not manage to really challenge the Mercedes. I think today we could have been closer, but third place here is an OK result, even if we always want to win and challenge for that. If we think where we were last year, there has been a really good effort from all the guys in the team. We have been pretty satisfied with the car all year long and the results have got better. Next year there is a new challenge and a new car: I think we have to keep doing the same things we did this year, improving consistently and working as one team, following the progress we did this year. Nobody knows what will happen next year and it’s too early to start guessing. We can only do our best and then we’ll see what the others do. Only time will tell.”
Sebastian Vettel: “Obviously I would have loved to get the podium again, but I think today’s result was the best possible one for us as a team. I lost quite a lot of time at the beginning and then kept playing catch up until the end. The pace was good, especially in the first and final stint, the car was also good and I managed to do some overtaking. I was very happy, it was good fun. We knew from before that Kimi and I would have crossed path with each other, as we were on very different tire strategies. It was clear that when Kimi would be close enough I would give him way to haunt the Mercedes: unfortunately that was not enough to achieve that, but I did not want to be in his way. I think we can be very happy for this season. Of course the last step to catch the Mercedes will also be the hardest one, but if you think about where we were only one year ago, this has been a miracle season. I can’t think of any other team which improved so much over a year. Big smiles are going around in our garage and for next year we want to increase the amount of smiles. I’ m very happy to have joined the team in this moment and to have had an opening year with Ferrari like I had. Hopefully we’ll have many more good ones coming”.
|Pit-stop||1st stop||Lap 10||New Soft|
|2nd stop||Lap 32||New Soft|
|Pit-stop||1st stop||Lap 23||New Soft|
|2nd stop||Lap 39||New Supersoft|
Weather: air 26/27 °C, track 27/31 °C. Clear skies
A third place for Kimi. Seb fights back to fourth
Yas Marina, 29 November – Kimi Raikkonen held on to third place from the start all the way to the final chequered flag of the season, that came at the end of a very tough race. It brought the Finn the valuable points he needed to finish the 2015 Drivers’ Championship in fourth place. Sebastian Vettel attacked all the way after starting from the eighth row of the grid. The German went from fifteenth place to fourth, running a different strategy, than those who finished ahead of him on the podium. Nico Rosberg won the race for Mercedes.
Maurizio Arrivabene: “A huge mistake on our side made it impossible for Seb to progress beyond Q1. Kimi did an outstanding job, ending the session with third best time. Tomorrow in the race we must simply give our best, in order to finish this season in style”.
Kimi Raikkonen: “It has been a nice Saturday, my car has been feeling pretty good the whole day. This morning I only struggled on some laps, but overall the behavior was the way I wanted and when it’s like that it’s a lot easier to put the lap together. The Mercedes have been very quick today and yesterday, in the lap times they are a bit faster than us, but the race is tomorrow, so let’s see. I did my maximum today. Tomorrow is another day, we can only do our best and see where we’ll end up. We’ll try to make a good start and then see how it pans out, going from there and making the right decisions.”
Sebastian Vettel: “Nothing wrong with the car, we thought that the lap I had on the Soft (harder) tyres was quick enough, but in the end it was not. There was also a car in front which shouldn’t have been there. So we misjudged the situation, a small mistake with big consequence, but the race is tomorrow and lots can happen. It is good that Kimi is in the front, we have a quick car and it is possible to overtake here, even if only tomorrow we’ll be able to tell how much it is. You can spend a lot of time speaking about what we did wrong, but in the end we know, so now we need to move forward.”
Raikkonen secures the third place. Vettel stranded in Q1
Yas Marina, 28 November – A breathtaking final lap resulted in a third place come the end of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix qualifying for Kimi Raikkonen today. The Finn set his best lap of the weekend in a time of 1.41.051, on his very last lap prior to the chequered flag. Sebastian Vettel had a tough afternoon, who having completed his first run on the Soft tyre, then took to the track with a set of Supersofts. Unfortunately, he was not able to make the cut into Q2 and qualified sixteenth. Starting from pole tomorrow will be Nico Rosberg, who took his Mercedes round in a time of 1.40.237, ahead of team-mate Lewis Hamilton (1.40.614).
Seb third and Kimi fifth in FP3
Yas Marina, 28 November – Sebastian Vettel finished third in his Ferrari in the final free practice session of the year, which recently ended at the futuristic Yas Marina circuit. The German completed 20 laps, his being being a 1.42.185. Team-mate Kimi Raikkonen completed two laps fewer, to go fifth with a 1.42.627. Once again the Mercedes duo were quickest with Nico Rosberg (1.41.856) ahead of Lewis Hamilton (1.42.137.)
Kimi Raikkonen: “It was a normal Friday, everything worked apart from some difficulties with the Supersoft tires in the long run. Maybe the lap times could have been a bit better on the single lap, but overall it was not too bad. I haven’t seen the data from today yet, but it’s only Friday and we don’t know what the others were doing. Obviously there is always something that we can improve, the Mercedes seem to be very fast, but we’ll try to do as good as we can tomorrow. This is a nice place to finish the season, hopefully we can do well.”
Sebastian Vettel: “All in all it is Friday, I think we can still improve and we have to improve. We are a little bit too far behind, I would like the gap to be smaller, and bigger to the cars behind. Force India was surprisingly quick and so was Red Bull Racing. In the first practice session I took some notes on my pad, but this is only my “to do” list for today and tomorrow…”
|RAIKKONEN – chassis 311||VETTEL – chassis 313|
|First Session||P3||1:44.500||27 laps||P5||1.44.742||23 laps|
|Weather: air 29 °C, track 37/38 °C. Sunny|
|Second Session||P7||1:42.849||36 laps||P5||1:42.717||35 laps|
|Weather: air 25/26 °C, track 28/31 °C. Clear skies|
Vettel and Raikkonen fifth and seventh in FP2
Yas Marina, 27 November –The second free practice session for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix produced a clearer picture of how things stand than the earlier one run at lunchtime. FP2 started in sunshine and ended under the daylight-bright floodlights. Once again, Mercedes was dominant, with Nico Rosberg (1.41.983) ahead of Lewis Hamilton (1.42.121.) The Ferraris of Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen finished fifth (1.42.717) and seventh (1.42.849) respectively. This session was run, in terms of visibility and temperature, in conditions that will be encountered in qualifying and the race so the two Ferrari drivers carried out long run tests on both tyre compounds. The quick laps produced positive data and the gaps between the leaders are extremely Close.
Ferrari third and fifth in FP1
Yas Marina, 27 November – The Ferraris finished the first free practice session for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in third and fifth places, to start off the action for the next three days in the Gulf, which bring this year’s Formula 1 World Championship to a close. Kimi Raikkonen took his SF15-T to third in 1.44.500 behind the Mercedes duo of Lewis Hamilton (1.43.754) and Nico Rosberg (1.43.859). The Finn worked on the usual Friday programme, while team-mate Sebastian Vettel made the most of the not to be repeated conditions to carry out some aero work and mechanical set-up adjustments. He was fifth in 1.44.702 behind Daniil Kvyat (1.44.702) in the Red Bull.
Seb enjoys the track and the challenge of the weekend
I think we had a great season, I think we can be extremely happy looking at the progress we made from the year before. This year we were able to improve the car significantly from last year, but we are not close enough yet, we’re still not the favorite and our target is to do a bigger step. It’s clear that we need to improve our car and also the engine side, which means not only horsepower but also involves the whole of the Power Unit. Obviously I don’t know what happens behind other doors, but I know what’s happening in Maranello and it looks very promising.The worst moment of the season was when I crashed against the barriers in Mexico, the best moment was in Malaysia: just two weeks before I had had my first race with Ferrari and two week later my first win, it was fantastic…
I’ve liked the Abu Dhabi track since the beginning, it’s a nice place and even though we haven’t had so many races here, it already feels like a classic place to go. I think people here put a lot of efforts in trying to make us comfortable. It’s a bit like Disneyland, in terms of facilities and so on; it couldn’t be any better. I think the track is great, there are a lot of different types of corners, unfortunately not so many high speed corners, but for the rest you have everything you need and racing at night is always something special. Compared to the opening year, when there was more downforce in the car, now it’s a bit more fun, especially in the last sector you have to make sure to find the rhythm, otherwise you can drop your laptime.
Kimi looks forward to season finale
This year was better than last one, but I’m still far away from where I wanted to be. We’ve had five DNFs and of course we paid a lot of points from those, we had too many issues and mistakes. As a team, though, we’ve gone a long way from last year, we all want to get Ferrari back where it was some years ago and everybody is pushing for that. Our car has been pretty good everywhere so I don’t expect it to be different here in Abu Dhabi, it’s all about doing things correctly and then you’ll get the result. Hopefully we can have a strong last race: it would be nice to leave it like that. I have no regrets on anything, this year has been like that and next year we’ll start all over again. Hopefully we’ll be able to challenge on every race weekend, time will tell. We’ll see next year when we start testing. In 2016 we have to do a better job overall, we’ll start the new year from a clean sheet and we’ll go from there. It will be interesting.
Esteban: “A circuit with high standards”
Maranello, 25 November –A great job has been done in Abu Dhabi when it comes to the circuit, which boasts a really impressive infrastructure.” That’s Scuderia Ferrari’s third driver, Esteban Gutiérrez’s first comment when talking to ferrari.com about the track that will host the final round of the Formula One World Championship. “Everything has been built to the highest standard,” continues the Mexican. “It means Abu Dhabi is a nice place to go, with a great atmosphere which has evolved year after year. “The race gets underway in the late afternoon, a feature that makes it unique on the calendar. The circuit is very technical: the only fast corners are turns 2 and 3, while the last sector is quite slow. When you come to the final part of the track, you have to be very careful in terms of managing the tyres, because the slow corners really raise the temperatures in the rears and this means that in the first two sectors, the driver has to make sure he doesn’t overheat them. I think the two key points in this race are finding the right mechanical set-up and managing the tyres. On top of that, we shouldn’t forget it’s very difficult to overtake here and the braking system comes in for a hard time. At this race, the drivers always use a special helmet visor to deal with the race starting in natural light, before ending under floodlights.”