Kimi Raikkonen did not think after qualifying that Ferrari can pull a similar surprise to what they did in 2015.

The Finn suffered a puncture on the second lap last year and made a two-stop strategy which helped him to fourth place at the finish. His team mate made a similar strategy and ended up winning the race, his first victory with the Scuderia.

Raikkonen, however, was unsure that a repeat was possible after qualifying 5th ahead of Vettel in sixth. He believes the new surface has made the track less tyre-demanding which was the reason Ferrari were able to make a two-stop work last year.

“It’s obviously a new tarmac and it’s very hard to say how it’s going to go. It will depend a lot on the weather conditions.” Kimi said after qualifying. “Obviously today we ran later than yesterday and also later than the race time, so it’s one of those things with the new surface to say which way it’s going to go and which tyre will be the best. I think there’s little difference between the teams but we’ll make some plans today and tomorrow and then see how the race starts. Hopefully we make the right choices.”

The Finn was not comfortable in the car all session long and the reason for that he thinks was that the Ferrari was unable to put heat in its tyres, which -ironically- was the reason they performed so well last year.

It was just a bit tricky on the first lap in Q1, the first lap in Q2 was pretty OK, but it was a bit difficult to get the tyres to work there.” he added. “I tried to get time back, but just kept losing more time, so it was not the greatest end, but that’s how it goes sometimes.”

Ferrari and Red Bull are locked in a battle for second in the constructors championship with just 15 points between them.

Image via Twitter – Scuderia Ferrari

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Ahmad Shallouf

Contributing Writer at MotorsportM8