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GP Week : Issue 165
28 GPWEEK.com // F1 >>> SPA 28 GPWEEK.com // PARTNERS: Kimi Raikkonen kept his podium tally ticking over in Belgium yesterday as he claimed his fourth top three finish in five races, but continued to be eluded by the first victory since returning to the sport at the start of the year. The Finn was the fastest of the two-stoppers during the GP, but never had the pace of winner Jenson Button, crossing the line 25 seconds adrift. Raikkonen is no stranger to the podium at Spa-Francorchamps, having won there on four previous occasions, and with the elimination of title contenders Alonso and Hamilton at the first corner, his chances of replicating past successes looked strong. Once the safety car had pitted however, he soon fell back before taking his sixth podium of the year just two seconds clear of Nico Hulkenberg. “I made a pretty okay start, similar to Jenson’s and I overtook the Sauber. I saw a lot of action in the mirrors but luckily it missed me,” said the Finn. “Unfortunately, we didn’t have the pace today. My car wasn’t great all weekend and we couldn’t find a competitive setup. “On new tyres it was okay, but we had to use a lot of downforce to prevent sliding. That meant we were very slow on the straight. We didn’t have the pace today and it wasn’t an easy race, so P3 was not too bad.” Despite not being fully happy with his car, he was able to pull off an audacious pass on 7-times world champion Michael Schumacher into the legendary Eau Rouge corner, replicating a similar move made by Mark Webber on Fernando Alonso a year earlier. The result did no harm to the Finn’s title chances, with championship leader Fernando Alonso’s failure to score bringing allowing Raikkonen to close to 33 points behind with 175 points left to score. EAU ROUGE OVERTAKE HELPS RAIKKONEN TO ANOTHER SPA PODIUM