One of a handful of drivers to have enjoyed more than one stint as a Ferrari F1 driver, enigmatic Finn Kimi Raikkonen remains one of the fans favourites. His no-nonsense demeanour, and non-political approach, singles him out as a driver who seems to have landed in the wrong era; it’s no surprise he has been known to enter non-F1 competitions under the pseudonym ‘James Hunt’.

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Raikkonen currently holds the distinction of being the most recent Ferrari F1 World Champion, having taken the title in 2007. He made the headlines around that time with a then record-breaking salary, yet was effectively paid-off by the team at the end of 2009. He would return in 2014, after a couple of years out of the sport and then a return with the Lotus team.

A Fine No. 2

Ferrari has come under some criticism this winter for opting to keep Raikkonen on as Sebastian Vettel’s team-mate for the fifth year on the run. Many have questioned his ability of late, although it should be said he has shown some impressive performances during the 2017 season, and some rather less so.

It could be that his excellent relationship with ‘team leader’ Vettel brings a certain stability to Ferrari, which they clearly need in their efforts to challenge the currently dominant Mercedes team. Never particularly regarded for his car set-up skills, Raikkonen is nevertheless extremely sensitive to the balance of the car, something which his engineers appreciate.

The Man Himself

It is often said that Raikkonen is a cold and unapproachable man – he’s not known as ‘The Ice Man’ for nothing – but for those who know him, nothing could be further from the truth. He is known for a very dry and typically Finnish demeanour, which brings with it a sometimes curious and yet playful sense of humour, which his team certainly appreciate.

Married, and with two small children, Raikkonen – also like Vettel – keeps his personal life separate from racing, and enjoys many hobbies and pursuits such as snowboarding. Having entered the F1 scene back in 2001 with Sauber – then one of the youngest of all time and with fewer than 20 car races to his name – at 38 years of age and with more than 270 starts, Raikkonen is now one of the elder statesmen of Formula 1, and the feeling is that 2018 could be his last year with Ferrari, before protégé Charles Leclerc takes his place.

Kimi Räikkönen Statistics

CountryFinland
Place of BirthEspoo
Date of BirthOct 17th 1979 – 38 years old
First RaceMar 4th 2001 Australian Grand Prix result
Last RaceNov 26th 2017 Abu Dhabi F1 GP result
First PoleJun 29th 2003 European Grand Prix result
Last PoleMay 28th 2017 Monaco F1 GP result
First WinMar 23rd 2003 Malaysian Grand Prix result
Last WinMar 17th 2013 Australian F1 GP result
First PodiumMar 3rd 2002 Australian Grand Prix result
Last PodiumNov 12th 2017 Brazilian F1 GP result
Races273
Race Starts271
Drivers’ Titles1
Victories20
Poles17
Podiums91
Points1,560
Fastest Laps43
Laps14,265

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