Kimi Raikkonen is cool and composed and sees no reason to panic. “We are only two races into the championship” he points out, “It is not time to start panicking”. I can’t quite imagine Kimi getting into a state of panic even if there were sufficient reasons for it, but that aside, he is right of course – we really ought to wait at least one more grand prix before raising cain, this is a bit early even by tifosi standards. And honestly, what is one supposed to make of suggestions like – “Michael Schumacher should attend races and coach Massa how to keep his cool in difficult times”? Last I heard Michael was not running any anger management classes, and to suggest that the poor man should lug himself all around the world with the F1 team just so he can make soothing noises over the radio to Felipe is ridiculous to say the least. Moreover it is rumored that he is currently in “Schloss Schumi” recuperating from the strain of all the vacationing he has been doing recently, so we should just let him be. I know the last time we said “This championship will start in Europe”, it didn’t work out so well and the first 3 races ended up making all the difference, but we should keep the faith. As Kimi says, “I think we are going to be much happier here than we were in the last race”.
Moving on, Kimi was clearly impatient to talk about the Sepang start once more, having answered the same question a few hundred times already in various languages (Q. What happened at the start in Malaysia? KR: We lost two places at the start, that is what happened). However he leaves us in no doubt that he is indeed very happy, just in case you care about that sort of thing. (Fernando says he is working harder at McLaren than before. How is it for you? KR: I am more happy. I think I enjoy it more here. Every team has different working ways but I am happy here so I don’t know if it is harder work or less work. I am happy here so that is the main thing). Good for him.
Meanwhile, Felipe Massa claims to be not too upset with Lewis Hamilton for making him look just a little silly at Sepang, saying “I would have done the same if I was in front. This is not dirty driving, it is just normal”. Of course Felipe’s judgement of what is normal and what is not might be a little clouded owing to his long association with Michael Schumacher (who as far into his career as Monaco 2006 thought it was quite normal to park his car during qualifying and take a stroll back to the pits), but there seemed to be nothing wrong whatsoever with Hamilton’s maneuver. Massa also revealed that Schumi had spoken to him twice on race day in Malaysia, once before the race and once after the race. Presumably to wish him luck before the race, and after the race out of curiosity to find out just what Felipe had been up to in the first few laps. As we know, Schumi despite his unparalleled genius had this nasty tendency to nap during starts, fall back a bit and then charge through the field to win the race, giving his fans a few mild heart attacks along the way. But we were talking about Felipe, and he sounds very positive for the Bahrain grand prix – “Q. So what are your feelings about this race? FM: Absolutely positive. We had a very good test here at the start of the season and had a good pace. The car was behaving quite well. That’s a positive. I think we have a good car, a good package and a good team”.
So that makes it a good car, good team and two positive drivers. We seem to be quite ready for Bahrain (and not trying to tempt fate here), just bring it on.