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Home > Sports > News > Reuters > Report

Raikkonen cautious despite quickest time

March 19, 2004 15:56 IST

McLaren's Kimi Raikkonen went inside the circuit record in practice for Sunday's Malaysian Grand Prix on Friday before quickly playing down the new mark's significance.

The Finn, who retired with engine failure in the season-opening race in Melbourne, clocked a fastest lap of one minute 34.395 seconds ahead of Michael Schumacher and Ferrari.

Raikkonen was philosophical about his chances of repeating his win last year in Malaysia following McLaren's disappointing showing in Australia.

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"So far it looks good because we are in first place and hopefully we can stay there," said Raikkonen, runner-up to Schumacher in last season's world championship.

"It's nice to come back after winning last year but I don't think it's going to help. Many other people have won here," he said with a shrug.

Raikkonen fought back from sixth quickest in Friday's first practice session to edge out Schumacher for the fastest time overall.

"The car feels good and is handling well but it's definitely too early to say how much we have improved since Melbourne."

McLaren scored just one point in the first Grand Prix of 2004, David Coulthard finishing eighth after Raikkonen had skidded off early.

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