Raikkonen confident for Hungary
Finn admits expected hot conditions long overdue for Lotus
Last Updated: 25/07/12 10:19am
Kimi Raikkonen: Eyeing a Lotus win this weekend
Kimi Raikkonen is hopeful Lotus will finally get their wish for hot conditions across a Grand Prix weekend in Hungary and they can register their first win of the season on Sunday.
The Enstone-based team have been consistently strong in race conditions throughout the season but their most competitive performance still came in the sweltering heat of Bahrain when Kimi Raikkonen and Romain Grosjean both finished on the podium.
Raikkonen, who has registered three further top-three finishes since then - including Sunday in Germany following Sebastian Vettel's time penalty - but no race victory, is looking to finally get back onto the top step of the podium at the Hungaroring this weekend.
"The team has been working hard in developing our car and we are confident we should be competitive in Hungary," he said.
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"Usually we have a hot weekend at the Hungaroring, and that's what we have been looking forward to during the whole summer.
"It's never nice to go to media after a race without a win. I love to win, not to explain why we were not able to win. Hopefully we can get the result we are looking for."
Raikkonen's latest strong points finish at Hockenheim moved the former World Champion ahead of McLaren's Lewis Hamilton into fourth place in the Drivers' Championship, with his deficit to reigning two-times champion Sebastian Vettel ahead now only 12 points.
The Finn hints that such high placing is a slight surprise half-way through his F1 comeback year but insists he wants even more in the second half of the season.
"If you had told me in January that we would be fourth halfway through the season, I think I would have been pretty pleased," Raikkonen added.
"It's not a bad place to be, but I think we have a car good enough to have scored more points. I want to win and the whole team is pushing hard to make it happen, so let's see what we can do in the second half of the season..."
Indeed Team Principal Eric Boullier has echoed Raikkonen's desire for an even stronger run between now and the end of the season, with maintaining fourth place in the Constructors' Championship a logical minimum target.
"It's obviously disappointing to lose third place [to McLaren after Germany], but it's very, very tight and we've built a gap over the fifth-placed team [Mercedes]," the Frenchman said.
"However, we are hungry for success and we do want more. If we can keep bringing the developments and updates we have been planning and make them work on track then I think we should be able to defend our current position.
"I am not sure about third or fourth by the end of the year, as everything is very close, but I am pretty convinced that we will be in the fight for one of the prime places in the Constructors' Championship."