Raikkonen eyes fifth Spa triumph

Kimi Raikkonen is determined to chalk up a nap hand of wins this weekend at a track he rates as "the greatest racing circuit in the world".

Formula 1 News: Kimi Raikkonen, Renault

Four times Raikkonen has stood on the top step of the podium to celebrate a Belgian Grand Prix victory at Spa-Francorchamps, the scene of his last triumph three years ago.

Two of those years were spent pursuing his rallying dream, but on his return to Formula One this season he has yet to taste victory with Lotus.

The 32-year-old Finn has come close on three occasions, finishing second in Bahrain, Valencia, and most recently Hungary prior to a five-week summer break in between races ahead of the resumption in Belgium from Friday.

Around the Hungaroring, Raikkonen hounded McLaren's Lewis Hamilton to the chequered flag but was unable to find a way past, having to settle for second best again.

Raikkonen readily concedes to "disappointment we haven't quite made that final step", which is why Spa would represent the ideal place to break his winless duck this year.

"Usually I've achieved good results at the Belgian Grand Prix, but what's happened before doesn't help me right now. Saying that, it doesn't do any harm either," said Raikkonen.

"Obviously it would be great to win at Spa for a fifth time. For me there have only been good memories from Spa and it's great to go racing there.

"For me it is the greatest racing circuit in the world. It is my favourite place.

"I've liked it since my first ever visit there in 2000 with Formula Renault.

"You can't get the same kind of a feeling anywhere else. It's great to race with a modern racing car at a proper circuit that has such a great tradition."

Raikkonen is fully aware one of the reasons behind his failure to win this year has been his form in qualifying, with his highest grid slot fourth on two occasions, most recently at the Spanish Grand Prix in May.

As one of five drivers going for the title, but trailing Fernando Alonso by 48 points, it is an area he knows he has to improve to achieve that elusive win and if he is to remain a realistic contender for the F1 crown.

Raikkonen added: "We've not been so strong in qualifying as we have in the race, which makes life harder for ourselves on Sundays.

"Of course we would rather win than come second or third, but it's a long season and I think we're improving all the time.

"If it (the win) comes then great, if not we'll keep trying. I've been in the business long enough that I don't really worry about things too much.

"We've been improving our position in the championships - both for myself and for the team - so as long as we keep doing that hopefully the win will come."



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