F1 testing: Smoky end to Raikkonen's Sauber return

After 102 laps on his Sauber return in F1 testing, Kimi Raikkonen's session ended with smoke seemingly coming from his car.

Kimi Raikkonen's first session with Sauber ended with smoke coming from his car. (FILE IMAGE)   -  Getty Images

Having left Ferrari at the end of the 2018 Formula One season, Kimi Raikkonen's first session back with Sauber ended with smoke seemingly coming from his car.

Seventeen years on from his debut F1 campaign at Sauber, the Finn has returned after two spells with the Prancing Horse, the first of which included a world title triumph in 2007.

In testing in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday, two days after the conclusion of the season, Raikkonen's initially productive outing endured a premature ending.

Having completed 102 laps, Raikkonen was forced to stop at Turn 7 and called on the assistance of a nearby steward and a fire extinguisher after what looked to be smoke appeared to be coming from the back of his C37.

"In the final run, the team finished just a few minutes ahead of schedule, without compromising the test programme. The causes are still under investigation," read a Sauber statement.

READ: Teen driver who survived horror crash flying home after surgery

The Finn was 11th fastest of the dozen drivers to take to the track, over three seconds behind the leading pace of his former Ferrari team-mate Sebastian Vettel, who posted the fastest time despite a spin and damage to his rear wing.

Lando Norris debuted for McLaren, as did Williams pair George Russell and Robert Kubica - the latter back in the sport after an eight-year absence, having suffered life-altering injuries in a rally crash in 2011.

Lance Stroll drove for Racing Point Force India, despite not yet being confirmed as having a seat for 2019, as teams tested out the new Pirelli tyres at Yas Marina Circuit.

"The purpose of this test is primarily to get a first feeling of the new tyres, with the impressions of the last weekend of racing still fresh in our minds, which gave us the possibility to compare," said Vettel.

"Unfortunately, today we lost some track time to repair work, but overall I think there were no major surprises as these tyres seem to work and to be fairly similar to the ones we used this season.

"Now we'll see how the new regulations for 2019 affect the speed of all cars and how they work in combination with the tyres, also depending on the compound choices at the various tracks."