Lotus fans around the world celebrate as Kimi Räikkönen takes the checkered flag, racing to victory during the first round of the FIA 2013 World Championship Formula One® race in Melbourne, Australia.
A force to be reckoned with, Kimi Räikkönen proved Lotus was the team to beat during a race marked by the threat of rain, and where tire strategy was critical in the racing game plan. With the other front runners taking 3 pit stops, Kimi was able to preserve tire condition, docking only twice over the 58 lap Albert Park course. From the off, the E21 showed its prowess, with a race pace that was nothing less than impressive, the fastest lap of the race 1:29.274. What marks the 20th win in his career, and the 81st for the Lotus name in F1®, the former World Champion is now leading the 2013 F1® World Championship.
Kimi Räikkönen: “Our plan was to do two stops and though it’s difficult in the first races to know when to stop and not go too early, we got it exactly right. The car has been very good all weekend, we were a bit disappointed qualifying 7th but with the conditions it wasn’t so easy. I knew if I went through the first laps in a good position we should give ourselves a good chance for fighting for the podium. It turned out to be not so difficult.”
Eric Bouillier: “The best start you can ever dream of. I am very proud of our team today.”
Teammate Romain Grosjean finished 10th, securing an important point for the team. All eyes are firmly on next weekend’s assault where the second round of the competition takes place at the Sepang circuit in Malaysia.