Raikkonen says “someone should punch” Perez

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Kimi Raikkonen hit back at Sergio Perez’s criticism of his driving in the Monaco Grand Prix by suggesting “someone should punch him in the face”.

The pair collided at the chicane when Perez tried to pass Raikkonen on the inside of the corner. The McLaren driver said Raikkonen “did not give me any room at all. I touched the wall on the entry to the corner and I had no room for that”.

Raikkonen laid the blame for the collision entirely at Perez’s feet: “Because of one stupid move from Sergio we’ve lost a lot of points to Sebastian [Vettel] in the championship and you can’t afford to lose ground like that,” he said.

“He hit me from behind and that’s about all there is to it. If he thinks it’s my fault that he came into the corner too fast then he obviously has no idea what he’s talking about.”

Asked if Perez would be spoken to by the drivers about his racecraft Raikkonen replied: “That won’t help. Maybe someone should punch him in the face.”

Raikkonen had already called Perez an “idiot” on the team radio earlier in the race after another attempted pass at the chicane by the McLaren driver.

Raikkonen and Perez have come together once before this year in the Chinese Grand Prix. This also provoked complaints from Raikkonen about Perez, but as in Monaco the stewards found nothing wrong with his driving.

Marco Andretti confident that fewer tests won’t hurt Andretti Autosport

Photo: IndyCar
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A small point of debate around the 2018 aero kit has been the manufacturer test days that took place through the Fall of 2017 and into the beginning of 2018. Chiefly, the debate has centered around teams who hadn’t participated in those manufacturer test days and if they’re starting the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season at a disadvantage as a result.

Team Penske, Ed Carpenter Racing, and A.J. Foyt Racing completed test days for Chevrolet, with Schmidt Peterson Motorsports and Chip Ganassi Racing doing so for Honda.

That left teams like Andretti Autosport out of the mix, with some voicing concerns as a result.

However, in a press conference during testing at ISM Raceway last weekend, Marco Andretti explained that he thinks Andretti Autosport should be able to catch up on development, citing the team’s resources – they’re the only IndyCar team with four full-time cars in their stable – and the fact that everyone is still adapting to the new kit.

“I feel like it’s early enough days that, yes, we can catch up,” Andretti said at ISM Raceway. “When there is anything new, a new car, new aero kit, at-track days are huge. We can sim all these things we want. To really get out there and confirm what we’re learning back at the shop is another thing.”

Ryan Hunter-Reay during testing at ISM Raceway. Photo: IndyCar

Andretti continued, “Yeah, I don’t think we should look at it like we’re behind the eight ball. With a four-car team, that’s where we can use it to our benefit. So far so good.”

Teammate Ryan Hunter-Reay, echoed Andretti’s sentiments, adding that while the situation is not perfect, they will need to adapt to it in order to remain competitive.

“Any time you have a new car, to put it into perspective, we’re on track three days on a road course before we get to (the season open in St. Petersburg). That’s a very short amount of time. It’s obviously not ideal, but we’re just going to lace up our boots and get on with it. That’s all you can do.”

Andretti Autosport will have one more team test, at Sebring International Raceway later on in February, before the season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.

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