Raikkonen Returns To F1
Kimi Raikkonen returns to the Formula One circuit - after a two-year dalliance with motor rallying - has been waited for in Finland as eagerly as the first snow. Now it is official: the coming season the Iceman will be seen racing for Lotus Renault GP with whom Räikkönen has signed a two-year contract, the price of which has not been revealed. In a Lotus Renault publicity video, Räikkönen announces “the passion for racing” as his main reason to return to F1.
A NASCAR experiment reminded him how much fun it was to race wheel-to-wheel instead of sitting all day long in a rally car with a stopwatch as his only opponent.
The two years behind the wheel of a rally car were a disappointment to Räikkönen. His dream to become the World Champion in two different major motorsports proved too difficult. Now the man is returning to his home turf, where - as a one-time World Champion - he does not have to prove that he has got what it takes.
In 2009 Räikkönen announced his weariness with all the supplementary activities as the reason for his retirement from F1. He enjoyed driving, but not being dragged around by the sponsors from one photo shoot to the next.
In a smaller Lotus team the socially-restricted Räikkönen will be able to control his publicity much more than was possible at McLaren or Ferrari. In the season now wrapped up, Renault’s car has not been quite as toothless as the Williams, which was Räikkönen’s other choice.