Kimi Raikkonen's co-driver Kaj Lindstrom has praised the Finn's improvements in making pace notes during the Jordan Rally.
Following his switch from Formula 1 to the World Rally Championship, it was widely expected that one of the biggest challenges facing Raikkonen would be making accurate and consistent pace notes on the two reconnaissance runs the crews make ahead of the competition. Lindstrom said his driver's notes were as good as the front-running WRC crews during this week's Jordan Rally. Lindstrom was even more pleased as the Dead Sea-based event is renowned as one of the toughest rallies on which to make notes courtesy of the barren, featureless roads.
Lindstrom said: "So far on this event we have made only five changes to the notes from the first run to the second run. I think some of the drivers at the front have probably made more changes than that. It's really good, I'm very pleased with the progress he has made."
Raikkonen, whose Red Bull-backed Citroen C4 WRC is eighth going into the final day of the event, admitted there was still room for improvement, saying: "Of course, they can still be better, but it's still early days – we need more experience. One of the keys to go fast is with the notes and here it has been difficult to make notes. It's been the hardest event so far to make notes on, but then again every rally I've done so far has been the hardest in my career, we have to learn."
Raikkonen added the loose gravel on the Middle East roads had made the going even tougher than expected.
"We have done some days in the car in the gravel, but that has been normal gravel," he said. "Yesterday was very slippery. We need more experience of these conditions."
Raikkonen's only problem was a half-spin in the final stage today.