Raikkonen frustrated by poor qualifying form in 2015

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Kimi Raikkonen made no secret of his frustration after finishing Sunday’s Monaco Grand Prix in sixth place, believing that the root of his problems lay in Ferrari’s qualifying form so far this year.

Raikkonen qualified in sixth place in Monaco, but with overtaking coming at a premium around the tight and twisting streets, the Finn was unable to make up any positions in the first stint of the race.

Although he did pass Daniel Ricciardo for fifth position in the first round of pit stops, Raikkonen dropped back down to P6 at the end of the race after the Australian barged his way past at Mirabeau.

“We knew that after starting from sixth position it would have been a difficult race,” Raikkonen said. “I was all the time behind slower cars and there was no way to overtake them even if I had a much better pace.

“At the the pit stop we managed to pass one Red Bull, we gained one place but we lost it for a stupid reason. I was following my normal line when Ricciardo hit my rear tire and pushed me wide, regaining the position. It’s not very clear what you are allowed to do, it’s really odd but there’s nothing we can do.”

Raikkonen believes that an improved performance in qualifying will be key to improving his fortunes in 2015, given that he has beaten teammate Sebastian Vettel just once in the opening six rounds of the year.

“For the next races we have to make a better job overall to make sure we get tires working and things sorted out without mistakes on Saturday in qualifying,” Raikkonen said. “This will make our life a lot easier on Sunday.

“Now we go to Canada a bit happier overall but it’s too early to make predictions, we have similar tires but the layout of the track is completely different, so let’s wait and see.”

Supercross: Talon Hawkins to debut in Houston in relief of Jalek Swoll

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Talon Hawkins, 19, will make his Monster Energy Supercross debut on a 250 this week in Houston, Texas as a fill-in rider for Jalek Swoll.

During the Anaheim 2 weekend, the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna team announced Swoll underwent successful surgery to repair a broken arm suffered in a practice crash.

That same weekend, Hawkins made some noise. He took the lead from teammate Casey Cohran on Lap 2 of the 250 SX Futures Main and led for three laps before he was overtaken by eventual winner Daxton Bennick. Cochran also got around him to push Hawkins to third.

This will not be Hawkins SuperMotocross professional debut, however; he made three Lucas Oil Pro Motocross starts last year with results of 19th at Spring Creek in Millville, Minnesota, 27th at Ironman in Crawfordsville, Indiana and a best finish of 17th in the season finale at Fox Raceway in Pala, California.

Hawkins also has a top-10 finish in the 125 All-Star division at Pala in 2019 riding a Husqvarna.

Speaking with RacerXOnline.com before the Loretta Lynn Amateur Nationals, Hawkins predicted his future with Husqvarna would come down to how he performed in that race.

“It all just comes down to how I perform at Loretta’s,” Hawkins said. “Say I do really well, I get a top three in both classes and do a pretty solid job, I would like to go pro and just kind of finish out the rest of the series. But there’s also the option of waiting a little bit longer, going back out to [Aldon] Baker’s [Factory] or going anywhere and training, and just being prepared. I’m also open to that too. Honestly, it’s whatever the team wants. Whatever we think is the best option is what we’re going to go with. So, I don’t really have a plan right now, just looking into the future.”

Hawkins finished third overall in the 125 B/C and Schoolboy divisions at the Loretta Lynn Amateur Nationals.