Kimi Raikkonen made no secret of his disappointment after retiring from yesterday’s British Grand Prix in a huge accident that resulted in the race being stopped.
On the first lap of the race, Raikkonen ran wide at Aintree corner and tried to power over the grass to get back onto the track. However, it did not go to plan as his Ferrari speared into the barrier on the right hand side of the Wellington Straight at a reported impact of 47g.
His car then careered back across the circuit, colliding with Felipe Massa’s Williams and ending both of their races. The Finn limped away from his Ferrari, and was transferred to the circuit’s media centre where he was found to have only suffered bruising to his ankle and knee.
“Unfortunately, my race today ended on the first lap, after I had managed to get away well, making up enough ground to be fighting for eleventh place,” Raikkonen said on Sunday. “At turn five, I went off the track and while trying to get back on, I must have hit a kerb.
“I then lost control of the car and ended in the barriers. It’s a real shame because yesterday, the feeling I had on track had improved and I was determined to do my utmost to bring home some points.
“I am really very disappointed with how things went today, but now I want to put this incident behind me and just concentrate on the next race in Germany.”
Raikkonen was due to test for Ferrari at Silverstone this week, but team principal Marco Mattiacci said that his condition would be assessed before a decision was taken.
“We checked several times and we will take a decision about the test, and what to do with the test, so we still have to take a decision,” he said. “I want to be 100% sure that he will be fine.”
Raikkonen’s misdemeanor is a new low point in a difficult season so far, and he revealed earlier this week that he is likely to walk away from F1 upon the expiration of his Ferrari contract at the end of 2015.
Media and fan attention focused on a controversial run-in between Haiden Deegan and his Monster Energy Yamaha Star Racing teammate Jordon Smith during Round 10 of the Monster Energy Supercross race at Detroit, after which the 250 East points’ Hunter Lawrence defends the young rider in the postrace news conference.
Deegan took the early lead in Heat 1 of the round, but the mood swiftly changed when he became embroiled in a spirited battle with teammate Smith.
On Lap 3, Smith caught Deegan with a fast pass through the whoops. Smith briefly held the lead heading into a bowl turn but Deegan had the inside line and threw a block pass. In the next few turns, the action heated up until Smith eventually ran into the back of Deegan’s Yamaha and crashed.
One of the highlights of the battle seemed to include a moment when Deegan waited on Smith in order to throw a second block pass, adding fuel to the controversy.
After his initial crash, Smith fell to seventh on the next lap. He would crash twice more during the event, ultimately finishing four laps off the pace in 20th.
The topic was inevitably part of the postrace news conference.
Smith had more trouble in the Last Chance Qualifier. He stalled his bike in heavy traffic, worked his way into a battle for fourth with the checkers in sight, but crashed a few yards shy of the finish line and was credited with seventh. Smith earned zero points and fell to sixth in the standings.
“I think he’s like fifth in points,” Deegan said. “He’s a little out of it. Beside that it was good, I don’t know. I wasn’t really paying attention.”
Deegan jokingly deflected an earlier question with the response that he wasn’t paying attention during the incident.
“He’s my teammate, but he’s a veteran, he’s been in this sport for a while,” Deegan said. “I was up there just battling. I want to win as much as everybody else. It doesn’t matter if it’s a heat race or a main; I just want to win. I was just trying to push that.”
But as Deegan struggled to find something meaningful to say, unsurprisingly for a 17-year-old rider who was not scheduled to run the full 250 schedule this year, it was the championship leader Lawrence who came to his defense.
“I just want to point something out, which kind of amazes me,” Lawrence said during the conference. “So many of the people on social media, where everyone puts their expertise in, are saying the racing back in the ’80s, the early 90s, when me were men. They’re always talking about how gnarly it was and then anytime a block pass or something happens now, everyone cries about it.
“That’s just a little bit interesting. Pick one. You want the gnarly block passes from 10 years ago and then you get it, everyone makes a big song and dance about it.”
Pressed further, Lawrence defended not only the pass but the decision-making process that gets employed lap after lap in a Supercross race.
“It’s easy to point the finger,” Lawrence said. “We’re out there making decisions in a split millisecond. People have all month to pay their phone bill and they still can’t do that on time.
“We’re making decisions at such a fast reaction [time with] adrenaline. … I’m not just saying it for me or Haiden. I speak for all the guys. No one is perfect and we’re under a microscope out there. The media is really quick to point a finger when someone makes a mistake.”
The media is required to hold athletes accountable for their actions. They are also required to tell the complete story.