Raikkonen recovers from ‘disaster’ start to finish P3 in Mexico

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Kimi Raikkonen recovered from a “disaster” opening lap to finish Sunday’s Mexican Grand Prix in third place, racking up his second straight Formula 1 podium finish for Ferrari.

Raikkonen started fifth at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez on Sunday and looked poised to enter the fight at the front after title rivals Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel dropped back after contact.

Raikkonen could not capitalize, instead picking the wrong line and losing places of Esteban Ocon, Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez, leaving him sixth in the opening stages.

The Finn passed Perez on-track before leapfrogging Ocon after pitting under the Virtual Safety Car, which combined with Hulkenberg’s retirement saw him rise up to third.

“The initial start wasn’t too bad,” Raikkonen explained. “All the guys behind me got a massive tow. I was left alone.

“The people behind me mananged to go past. It was a disaster.

“But then we had enough speed to improve. Obviously a lot happened.”

Raikkonen finished the race third for Ferrari ahead of teammate Vettel, who saw his hopes of a fifth F1 title end in Mexico despite fighting back from the opening lap contact.