March 15th, 2013 (F1plus/G. Polychronis).- The Iceman had two very respectable practice sessions, placing sixth in P1 and fourth in P2. Raikkonen’s fastest time for both sessions was in P2, with a time of 1:26.361.
Romain Grosjean also posted decent times, his fastest being a 1:26.680, three tenths slower than his Finnish teammate.
Raikkonen appeared very content after the second practice sessions and he expressed his satisfaction for the car’s performance.
“I’ve been pretty happy with it [the car] all day, hopefully we can keep it like this over the weekend and get a good result.”
All teams on the Formula One roster experienced significant tyre issues during winter testing, which was caused by the cold conditions. The first two practice sessions at Albert Park gave drivers their first impressions on how the Pirelli tyres perform in warmer conditions. Raikkonen realised how much better the tyres performed in Australia than in previous winter testing locations. He was especially impressed with the Super-Soft compound.
“They [the tyres] lasted well, I think the tyres lasted much better than in testing.”
Raikkonen may show plenty signs of optimism ahead of the race at Albert Park, however, his team will need to show consistency throughout the weekend to gain maximum points.
Romain Grosjean was also happy with the E21, even thought he did somwhat ok in the FP1 with 10th best, later in the afternoon he clocked fifth best.
“It feels great to be out on circuit and on such a lovely day too. The track felt good and the car felt better. It took a while for the grip to come to us, but you expect that on a street circuit.
"We made good progress with set-up on the car over both sessions and I think there’s more to come which is promising.” Grosjean Said.
Opinions about the dry tyre compounds may become obsolete for the Australian Grand Prix, as there is the possibility that we will see the Intermediate and Wet compounds, considering showers are scheduled for Saturday and Sunday.