Yes yes yes!
Finally the podium celebration looked all the more lively, champagne tasted all the more better, the winner seemed all the more deserving. Kimi Raikkonen won his 18th F1 race in his career at the Spa Francorchamps circuit in Belgium. His last victory was at the Catalunya back in April 2008, so it's been 490 days since I had a solid reason to smile after a race. Additionally, what makes this win the sweetest of his four victories in Spa is the fact that he did it with the 3rd best car on the grid. Yeah, bring more of the Alonso-to-replace-shit!
Roll on the dice didn't really fall into Kimi's hands on saturday when he qualified 6th well behind the surprising pole sitter Fisichella of Force India. Starting on the dirty side, things were further complicated when Barrichello's engine went into an anti-stall right when the lights went. Kimi avoided him but ran wide at La Source cutting it and on to the run off area but managed to squeeze past the likes of Heidfeld and Trulli before emerging 3rd at Eau Rouge. Then came the excitement. He picked up the slipstream of Kubica and went past him with the aid of KERS across the long straight. He was second. The move looked matter-of-fact kind, that's Raikkonen! Back in the middle of the grid, there were incidents involving Algeusuari, Grosjean, Button and Lewis. All four retired the debris of the aftermath lead to the deployment of safety car.
It was a long SC stint as Kimi though a bit heavier than Fisichella who was leading, had to warm his tyres and brakes to ensure he's close enough onto the run to Eau Rouge when the SC goes in. What followed the SC period sent a chill down my spine. Kimi this time made it look all the more easy but more importantly, he was leading the race after lap 4. I wanted to scream "fuck you antis, he's here to stay". Post quali weights suggested Kimi was 2 laps heavier than Fisichella but all calculations went haywire as it turned out since Mercedez engine saves more fuel than Ferrari and hence better mileage. So both of the drivers came together for the first as well as the second pitstop, clearly sending a lot of nerves for us fans watching the action on the TV sets. Ferrari did well to ensure Kimi was ahead of Fisi after both the stops. Soft tyres worked brilliantly well but it was the KERS coupled with never-melting Ice magic that prevented Fisi from making a move with the faster car.
Vettel meanwhile was on a different strategy alltogether avoiding all the mayhem which happened at the back of the grid earlier in the race. He leapfrogged Kubica for the 3rd and final podium place. Meanwhile our man held the roaring Force India behind and claimed his triumph just 0.9 secs ahead. Forza!!! The story of the race apart from Kimi's 4th victory was that Force India got their first point of the season thanks to an ever unshakaeble Fisichella who stood virile against all odds. The updates which they had brought from Valencia worked wonders in the dense shuddery forests of Spa. From the looks of it, they are not gonna stop developing their challenger for the rest of the season. Monza cometh!
Finally, it's been a pleasure to write a review after Kimi's fantastic win. He's special at Spa which is considered to be a drivers' citadel. Kimi obviously would be bullish if asked about the 'secret' of winning here but fellow Raikkos know it better than anyone else
Kimi's the KING of SPA