Kimi Raikkonen satisfied with P4 in qualifying

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Kimi Raikkonen is satisfied to have finished 4th in today’s qualifying session for the German Grand Prix, believing that Lotus have improved greatly since the last race at Silverstone where he could only finish P8. However, he does believe that 3rd place was there for the taking had he not been held up.

“I think we had a chance to be 3rd place but I had some traffic on the outlap on new tires and couldn’t really get the fronts working as we wanted,” Raikkonen said after qualifying. “We lost probably three-tenths to our fastest in the first sector.”

Raikkonen was pleased that the team has made a step forward, although he is not convinced that the gap to Red Bull and Mercedes has been cut.

“I think it’s much better than it’s been lately. Better than before, than the last couple of races but it’s not just so easy that now we should be more close to them than before because we are more further up. There’s every chance that something goes wrong, but it’s not too bad.”

The Finnish driver also confirmed that he did not run with Lotus’ new passive DRS device which was trialled at Silverstone.

“No. It’s not that kind of circuit that it’s really useful.”

Raikkonen has never won a grand prix at the Nurburgring despite twice qualifying on pole, although he was leading on the final lap in 2005 before a tire failure.

Ken Roczen signs with HEP Progressive Ecstar Suzuki for 2023

Roczen Progressive Ecstar Suzuki
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ANAHEIM, California – Ken Roczen will make the move from HRC Honda to H.E.P. Motorsports with the Progressive Ecstar Suzuki team, ending a long and eventful offseason that saw his split from his longstanding team after he committed to running World Supercross (WSX).

“H.E.P. Motorsports is thrilled to announce that the team has signed Ken Roczen as its premier rider for the 2023 season,” the team announced on Instagram. “Former AMA Motocross champion Roczen will be aboard a Suzuki RM-Z450. Roczen, who won his most recent championship on a Suzuki, will be reunited with the brand and bring his exciting style, determination, and grit back to the RM Army.

“Ken Roczen will compete in the upcoming 2023 Supercross and Motocross Championship series which is set to start on January 7 at Anaheim Stadium in Southern California.”

For Roczen, it is a return to the bike of his youth and on which he had some of his greatest professional success.

“This thing has been going on for weeks and weeks and weeks in the making, but there was so much uncertainty,” Roczen told NBC Sports during Monster Energy Supercross Media Sessions. “It was a very unique situation. I just finally signed two nights ago, so it’s really only legit once the ink hits the paper. It’s been in the works for a long time, but there were just a lot of questions and a lot of input from a lot of other teams too.

“Good things take time, and I’m okay with that. I grew up riding Suzuki. Ot’s like a homecoming. It’s a special feeling”

Roczen won the 2016 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship on a Suzuki before making the move to Honda. That year he won nine of 12 Nationals and finished no worse than second as he easily outpaced Eli Tomac by 86 points. He finished third in his next Pro Motocross outing in 2018 after sitting out the outdoor season in 2017.

“I am beyond excited to reconnect with Suzuki for the 3rd time in my career. We’ve had a lot of success in the past and I’m looking forward to seeing what we can accomplish together in our future.” Roczen said in the Instagram post.