kimster.jpgIt would seem that Fernando Alonso is not the only current F1 driver who likes to consult with the Jedi-Master of excuses Honda’s Rubens Barrichello, when he has made an uncharacteristically bad hash of things and been shown up by an inexperienced rookie. No indeed, Kimi Raikkonen has seen that what is good for the goose will do for the gander and has jumped aboard the excuses bandwagon to explain why he has been made to look distinctly average by a team-mate that at times struggles to remember he isn’t actually an off road racer. And why not? everyone else is at it….

Kimi: “I’m not crying…no honestly…”

So what is the Kimster’s explanation then for his rather average showing in the Bahrain Grand Prix we can’t help but wonder….did a matching lighting pod spirit itself off the ceiling of the Ferrari garage in sympathy and put a dent in his wagon…?

No. According to the Kimster, the problem is that Ferrari have yet to master the art of getting the best out of the car in qualifying trim. Therefore the lack of single lap performance in qualifying is hampering the grid position he can achieve, thus compromising the race the following day. Glad we have that misunderstanding all cleared up then. Here at FFN we were actually under the misguided illusion Kimi was back to his old ways of sand-bagging in qualifying and then taking siesta’s during the race. Perhaps someone should actually remember to mention this qualifying perfomance deficit to team-mate and qualifying demon Felipe Massa who does not appear to be reading the team script (too busy reading stories about himself in the motorsports press I expect, and gassing to Tom Cruise who is tipped to play the lead in the Felipe Massa story).

Tom Cruise awaits his adoring public… tomcruise.jpg

Meanwhile Ferrari’s Technical Director Marc Almond erm *cough* I mean Mario Almondo has kindly put his singing career on hold to give us his thoughts on Kimi’s troubles. “If you are not first or second you can always do a better job. I have to say that he has to think of a better way of managing this specific start and this part of the job that we are going to do every weekend after the race, we will re-analyse things and we will do the same this weekend and it’s part of the enrichment of every driver and every technician who is part of the team.”. Which in Almondo speak actually means “We will take him back to Maranello, thrash him with a copy of Gazetta Dello Sport and lock him in the trophy cabinet until he promises to do better next time”.

It would seem that Ferrari’s Sporting Director, resident miracle worker and all round clever chappie Stefano Domenicali has actually got to the crux of this mysterious qualifying problem. Kudos to him. The Chirpy Italian quipped “Kimi’s best characteristic is that he’s always cool, he’s always looking behind the fence. He’s not emotionally involved, at least, apparently, because he’s a thinker and so you can see that”. Well it’s all very well looking behind the fence, but in motor racing your supposed to be actually in the car and looking at the race track not gawping at the spectators….maybe someone needs to read Kimi his job description again.

Hopefully it will all be ironed out soon enough, otherwise there will be calls for Ross Brawn to come back and sit on Kimi until he behaves.

nando1.jpgOver at McLaren it would appear that cracks are starting to appear in their ever-so-shiny chrome facade. Just about everyone you can think of is waxing lyrical about Nando’s young rookie team mate (reach for your earplugs!) Lewis Hamilton, including McLaren CEO Martin Whitmarsh, who has according to the latest rumours been onto the FIA already to get Lewis’s first 3 World Driver’s Championship Trophies made up ready and we are only about one month into the F1 calendar.

So it is amusing to see today that McLaren are quick to make it clear that the other driver for their team Double World Champion Fernando Alonso (lest you had forgotten him like most of the media) is not afraid of his young upstart of a team-mate.

Alonso: “I could just throttle him right now….”

“Our guys are really true competitors. But I think Fernando has tremendous resilience, self-belief and confidence. He will recognise that he has come out of the first three races as co-leader of the championship and he will fancy his chances of getting the job done.” a certain Mr.Whitmarsh was heard as saying.

Well we wish Nando luck, we can’t help but think he is going to need all that resilience, confidence and self-belief he can get to stop himself going absolutely bonkers if he has to put up with hearing how wonderful his team mate is at the same rate of knots us poor viewing public are subjected to. Really someone should explain to the spaniard there is no shame in being terrified going to work when your Boss is Ron Dennis and you can’t go two feet without seeing the ever so smug mugshot of your team-mate grinning inanely at you wherever you go….truly is the stuff of nightmares.