Raikkonen may sit out Ferrari tests

Hampshire Chronicle: Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen may sit out testing at Silverstone next week after a heavy crash on the opening lap of Sunday's British Grand Prix Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen may sit out testing at Silverstone next week after a heavy crash on the opening lap of Sunday's British Grand Prix

Ferrari team principal Marco Mattiacci has confirmed he is yet to make a decision on whether Kimi Raikkonen will take part in the mid-season testing sessions at Silverstone next week.

The 2007 world champion limped away from his wrecked Ferrari on the opening lap of the British Grand Prix having crashed into a barrier on the Wellington straight, bringing out the red flag in the process.

He did enough damage to the guardrail to cause an hour-long delay, with team-mate Fernando Alonso eventually finishing sixth as the Maranello marque continue to struggle to make an impact at the head of the field.

With two days of testing on Tuesday and Wednesday, it remains to be seen if Raikkonen will be cleared to participate as Ferrari look to address the issues that are holding them back.

The Finn reportedly suffered bruising to his knee and ankle with Ferrari measuring the impact of the crash at a force of 47g and Mattiacci is yet to decide whether he should return so quickly as a result.

"Kimi is okay," he said.

"We have checked several times and we are taking a decision about what to do with the test, we still have to make a decision.

"I want to be 100 per cent sure that he is super fine but there is no major issue at the moment. There was some kind of issue going out of the track and coming back on he found a bump - that was the issue."

Mattiacci refuted claims that Raikkonen is looking to retire from Formula One when his current Ferrari deal expires and also denied rumours head of engine and electronics Luca Marmorini is set to be replaced.

"Kimi did not inform us that he is going to retire from F1," he said.

"He answered a question and said he doesn't know what he is going to do, he did not say he was going to retire. My point is that I need to work with Kimi at his best, I'm not thinking about what is happening in 2016.

"We don't have to make any announcements. The best announcements are results, they are the best announcements a team can make.

"From here we need to prepare a different team for 2015, do we need to do announcements? No. Do we need to continue improvements? Yes. That is our position so far."

Alonso was involved in a memorable fight with Sebastian Vettel for several laps as both drivers continually complained of foul play over their respective radios.

After some enthralling wheel to wheel action, Vettel finally found a way through and scampered away in his Red Bull, leaving Alonso to bring his car home sixth.

"I think he (Vettel) was reporting every time that I was going out (of the track limits)," said Alonso.

"He was doing the same behind me - if it had not been that lap it would have been the next lap. We have a two-second deficit in pace so if we did 13 laps to keep him behind it was welcome for the TV and our sponsors but after that we knew we would lose our position.

"We had an aerodynamic problem and we were thinking about retiring the car, we were having battery problems and then in the last stint they told me to save fuel."

Alonso had to fight back after receiving a five-second stop/go penalty for starting the race out of his grid slot but when asked if it affected his final position, he gave a bullish reply.

"Sixth. And if I had started on pole position - sixth," he said.

"Everyone stopped at the end of the formation lap and when I looked for my board I saw number seven for Kimi and the next one I saw was number 77 for (Valtteri) Bottas.

"I missed completely the number 14, I didn't know where it was. I tried to engage the reverse gear two or three times but it did not engage and then suddenly two lights were on the start lights. I had to go into first and go and then wait for the penalty."

Raikkonen was left bemoaning a missed chance of securing a seventh points-scoring finish of the season but is determined to come back strong in Germany.

"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 11th place," he said.

"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 want to put this incident behind me and just concentrate on the next race in Germany."

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