And what the "new" outfit (still owned by Sauber, by the way, despite the Alfa Romeo Racing tag) came up with was a Valentine's Day livery for the first display of their 2019 vehicle, which occurred on... "I look forward to getting to know the vehicle better there".
The new Alfa Romeo has appeared on track for a shakedown in Italy, with the team opting for a radical approach to the new aerodynamic regulations. "We started the auto for the first time a week ago and we are going step by step". "The lap time comes easily, I'm very happy".
"Obviously we started the day off with a spin. but apart from that, everything ran smoothly", said Raikkonen. But after a positive first day of running, was the Finn starting to think of an achievable goal for his 2019 season? "I'm not really surprised - any team expects to do good laps in the auto".
"We had a very high evolution in the last races of last season, so we are hoping to start from there", he told Sky Italia.
"I think I read it the same like everybody else", he revealed. There's only a very limited amount of days that we can do testing so we need to put laps and learn from the vehicle.
What they hope will not be repeated was their lackluster performance past year, where they finished in eighth place, ahead of only Scuderia Toro Rosso and Williams, having amassed just 48 points. Everything ran smoothly on the auto side so.