Vettel and Raikkonen take to Daytona oval with Ferrari
Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen were on track at the Daytona International Speedway in Florida on Sunday as Ferrari celebrated the end of their 2016 motorsport season with their traditional Finali Mondiali event, the first to be held in the United States.
Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen at Ferrari’s Finali Mondiali event, Daytona International Speedway, Florida, USA, December 2016 © Ferrari
After meeting with journalists, Vettel and Raikkonen got behind the wheel of two F60 cars – the Scuderia’s 2009 F1 challenger – to put on a show for the attending fans around the famous banked oval, demonstrating standing starts, pit stops and, of course, the traditional burnouts.
Before returning to pit lane, the two team mates drove side by side over the finish line in a tribute to the famous parade finish of the three Ferrari sportscars at the 1967 24 Hours Daytona race.
As well as looking back on 2016, Vettel and Raikkonen were also keen to look forward to 2017, when they hope Ferrari will be able to improve on their disappointing third-place finish in the constructors’ championship this year.
“We all felt bad about it” admitted Vettel to Ferrari’s website. “We wanted to win, but we didn’t reach our goals. However, I have reasons to believe that in 2017, we will have a much stronger package.”
Raikkonen added: “There is a change to the regulations next year and it’s hard to say who will make the best of it. We have to concentrate on ourselves, because when you are called Ferrari, the expectations are very high.”
Ferrari’s Daytona weekend also featured the biggest parade of Maranello machinery ever seen on an American track, with more than 800 cars driven by their owners.