MARCH 17, 2013
Raikkonen wonders if Lotus budget big enough for title
Kimi Raikkonen, 2013's early championship leader, has questioned whether Lotus can keep up its winning pace throughout the season.
The Finn beat formidable opponents Fernando Alonso, of Italian giants Ferrari, and Red Bull's triple consecutive reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel to the chequered flag in Australia.
Asked if Lotus - whose budget is also eclipsed by McLaren and Mercedes - can keep up the pace in F1's era of constant and rapid-fire car development, former McLaren and Ferrari driver Raikkonen was unsure.
"I'm sure we have the people, all the tools," he said.
"The money is a big part," said Raikkonen, referring to Enstone based Lotus, whose previous incarnations were the championship-winning works Renault and Benetton teams.
"For sure we don't have the same budget as Ferrari or Red Bull or Mercedes but we could show last year that ... we did pretty well on the money and the things we have," he added.
"Of course it's not going to be easy for us," he admitted.