Ferrari boss Maurizio Arrivabene refused to criticise Kimi Raikkonen for his costly spin at the U.S. Grand Prix, instead praising the Finn for the determination he showed to get back on track.
Raikkonen spent the early stage of the race battling with Max Verstappen after starting from 18th after an engine penalty, but spun off the circuit after switching to slick tyres. The Ferrari driver damaged his front wing and appeared to be stuck against the wall, but managed to eventually wrestle free by keeping his foot on the throttle and turning the steering wheel.
Though the crash eventually caused Raikkonen's retirement Arrivabene thinks the Finn demonstrated the good spirit which has propelled Ferrari to three wins in its turnaround 2016 campaign.
"Funny that you start the first question with the bad news," Arrivabene said when asked about Raikkonen after the race. "For me it was not bad news because he crashed, but I appreciate the fact that he tried very hard to come out of the barrier and this is a gesture that demonstrated 360 degrees the spirit of the team this year."
Raikkonen accepted the blame for the crash, saying he had failed to spot a patch of water on the corner. Team-mate Sebastian Vettel fared better and finished third, but Arrivabene admits Ferrari felt it could be on for a fourth win of the season before the final safety car period.
"Concerning Sebastian, he made a fantastic race and the strategy was very good. At a certain point of the race before the second safety car we were also dreaming but it is fine like this and we are happy."