Raikkonen hopeful of strong result in China

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Kimi Raikkonen is hopeful of a strong result at the Chinese Grand Prix next weekend following a good start to the 2013 Formula One season.

“There’s no reason why we shouldn’t go well there,” explained Raikkonen in a team statement. “We have some new parts for the E21 and the last upgrades we had seemed to help so it will be interesting to see what will happen if it doesn’t rain.”

Raikkonen has a good record in China, and he spoke of his wish to extend this.

“I have been first, second and third in Shanghai in previous years so it would be nice to add to that list.”

However, the Finn did admit that until he had some lap time in the E21 at the Shanghai International Circuit, it would be hard to make any predictions.

“It’s always difficult to predict what will happen in the next race as we haven’t been there yet with this car. Every car reacts differently to each circuit.

“If we get the car working as well as we did on Friday at Sepang, we should do well in Shanghai too.”

Raikkonen won the opening race of the season in Australia, but he had a difficult weekend in Malaysia that saw him finish P7. Lotus do appear to be working well with the new Pirelli tires, and the Iceman will be hopeful of a good showing in China to underline his championship credentials.

Audi bids farewell to Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich upon retirement

Audi Sport
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Audi bid farewell to its iconic head of motorsport, Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich, at its end-of-season ‘Race Night’ event in Germany on Friday upon his retirement.

Ullrich took over the reins as Audi’s head of motorsport in 1993 and stayed in the role for 23 years, overseeing its arrival in the prototype class of sports car racing and domination of the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Ullrich stepped down from the position at the end of 2016, handing the reins over to ex-Audi DTM chief Dieter Gass, and attended his final racing event with the German marque at its first works Formula E outing in Hong Kong earlier this month.

Ullrich was honored at the Race Night event on Friday and thanked for his efforts in developing Audi into a force within global motorsport.

“In 566 factory-backed commitments during this period he celebrated 209 victories, 13 of them in the 24 Hours of Le Mans, eleven in the 12-hour race at Sebring and nine in the ‘Petit Le Mans’ at Road Atlanta,” a piece on Ullrich’s tenure for Audi’s website reads.

“31 driver titles in super touring car racing, in the DTM and in the sports prototype category are credited to him. 57 campaigners were Audi factory drivers during Wolfgang Ullrich’s era and he was responsible for 18 new developments of racing cars – an impressive tally.”