| Source: autosport.com |
Working as a driver manager with his son Steve, Robertson proved to be astute in both finding young talent and sealing deals that got them quickly in to F1.
Having helped push Button up the junior ranks to secure his debut with Williams in 2000, Robertson was even more impressive a year later in convincing Sauber – and the FIA – to allow Raikkonen to race in F1 despite only having competed in Formula Renault previously.
Although Button would eventually move on to different management, Robertson continued to look after Raikkonen’s career.
As well as managing drivers, Robertson, along with Raikkonen, also helped set up the successful Formula 3 team Double R Racing,
Button himself expressed his sadness at the passing of Robertson, who had been ill for some time.
“Very sad to hear that David Robertson who helped me reach my dream of racing in Formula 1 has passed away,” wrote Button on Twitter. “My thoughts are with his family.”
The KRS community are very saddened to hear this news and we would like to give our sincere condolences to Steve and his family, and of course Kimi. David, not just a manager for Kimi’s early career, was a father-like figure in Kimi’s life and he will be sorely missed. We’ve always been very grateful for David and Steve recognising Kimi’s talent early on, supporting him away from Finland in the UK races and then bringing him into Formula One. Below are a few features we would like to share to remember David. R.I.P.
Video: David Robertson speaking after Kimi wins the 2007 F1 driver’s championship at Brazil (@ 3:04mins)
How to manage a champion – exclusive with David Robertson
Q: David, you’ve come a long way with Kimi. How does it feel for the both of you to have finally won the title and trophy?
David Robertson: Well, the words that I have to describe this feeling seem, to Steve and I, to be really inadequate. Sheer ecstasy is the feeling and we are still smiling now. When you think that despite two mechanical failures he still did it – winning the most races and scoring the most fastest laps. It was so close in 2003, when he would have been the youngest driver ever and then in 2005, after more failures than I care to remember, he was to be thwarted again. It began to make you think that it was never meant to be, so to finally do it, in such a dramatic fashion against all the odds, was just unbelievable. As everyone knows, with reliability, he would already be three times a world champion!
Q: Kimi has said that nothing will change – that he will always stay the same. Nevertheless, it must be different now that he is champion and he doesn’t have to prove he is of title-winning material…
DR: I am sure that he feels like he says because that is the way that he is. What he says to you is what he means – there are no sides to the lad. But if it were a normal person I’d agree with you that they would feel like they have had a huge monkey taken off of their back.
Q: How did you and Kimi meet? What was it that convinced you that he had what it would take to become a great?
DR: We met when he was brought to our attention through that well known petrol head Peter Collins. Peter told us all about this kid who was in an inferior kart to the rest but was always there in the frame and that in the wet he was amazing. Steve and I then brought him over to test and he was awesome to say the least – he literally looked like he could make the car talk. I know that it sounds corny, but that is the truth. To Steve, he reminded him of the drivers that he had driven against like Schumacher and Hakkinen and he had the best car control that he had ever seen. From the moment that I first met him we took to him completely, hook, line and sinker. As a person, we trusted him and, if you like, he became one of the family, as we literally love him. To me he was like another son and to Steve like a brother. When we address cards to him, we tell him that it is from his English family and you know I like to feel that that is the way that he thinks of us. That’s not to say that his real parents were not 100 percent behind him, because without them he would not be here. They are amazing people too. With them too, what you see is what you get, there are no sides to them – they are the salt of the earth. They sacrificed a lot to enable their son to do what he always wanted to do.
Q: Kimi hasn’t made a wrong move in his career to date – every team he has joined has moved him on. How much does he get involved in these decisions? Or does he trust you completely to make them?
DR: He has a lot of respect for what we think and we make the decisions together. Of course it goes without saying that it was the right thing to do to go to Ferrari, after all, that is the team that all the drivers on the grid want to go to at some point in their career.
Q: But with several key people leaving after Michael Schumacher’s retirement, joining Ferrari was a bit of a gamble. You must have believed that even with those uncertainties, Kimi would enjoy a better 2007 with the Italian team than if he had stayed at McLaren or headed to Renault…
DR: Yes, contrary to what other people thought, we thought that the team had more strength in depth than that. The one person that we thought was critical to the move was the man himself – Jean Todt. I have never known anyone that works as hard as he does. If he was not going to be there, then it would have been a different story. Like any great leader, though, I have found that his work ethic has been contagious and that all of the people that are there are the same and they follow their leader. The passion there is second to none. Trust me, there is no other single reason why Ferrari are the team that they are, than the passion that lies in their very core and spreads to every man that works in their factories. Italy is a very proud nation and they are behind their team and their drivers.
Q: A driver dubbed the ‘Iceman’ and a team that is known for its big emotions – how could that combination possibly work?
DR: You are right, Kimi is not one for wearing his heart on his sleeve and this was one of the things that attracted Ferrari to him. They thought that Kimi was different. After all, he was Kimi and not Michael. That, though, has not made any difference and the team are already very fond of him because he never moans, never makes excuses and just gets on with the job. He sometimes makes mistakes himself and therefore never sees fit to blame anyone in the team for their mistakes either. I once remember Ron (Dennis) said to Kimi, ‘hey, we are moving this guy from the race team as he is the one that caused the finger problem’. Kimi immediately said to him that he was not to touch any of his team, as they never did it deliberately and that everyone makes mistakes so please leave them alone. That is Kimi and that is why so many still love him at McLaren – and why they do now at Ferrari.
Q: Kimi is world champion and Ferrari the constructors’ champion, so everybody must be on cloud nine. Leaving the celebrations to one side, how was the year as a whole? When Kimi joined, some argued that with the team so focused on Schumacher, any successor would have a hard time…
DR: I think that as far as the press are concerned they run away with their own views and they are normally a long way from the truth. The fact is that of course Michael was important to Ferrari but so were so many other people, if you like they were the unsung heroes. Schumacher was a great driver, but Ferrari are a great team. Some people got carried away with the importance of a few individuals and forgot that it was the team, not that jack built, but that Jean Todt built and that Michael was a part of that team and not the sole reason as to why it did well. The team were unbelievable with Kimi when he started. They made every effort to make him feel at home and helped him through the difficulties that he had with the new tyres and his new crew.
Q: Looking back at that crucial race in Brazil, how was Kimi emotionally in those days. Did you speak to him about it?
DR: There is no doubt that, as you would expect, he was over the moon he had managed to pull it off. We were so proud of him during the post-race interviews. You could not have written it any better than the way that he handled it, it was word perfect. The good news is that with Kimi, you knew that he meant every word of it. That is why the team were so happy, because they are now aware of him and understand that he never just pays lip service – it was absolutely straight from the heart.
Q: McLaren’s appeal of the Brazilian result left the championship open for almost four weeks. How did he cope during that period?
DR: Well when you know Kimi, you know that he has this very unique philosophy and that is that he never worries about anything that he can not change and that is another of his great strengths. I remember reading a book about how to stop worrying and start living and I thought after I had known him for a very short time that he could have written that book himself. It just comes naturally to him.
Q: Kimi – and his alias James Hunt – occasionally enjoy some wild times. How much do you try to control that? Do you trust that as a professional he knows the limits?
DR: Once again, thanks to the press, things get quoted wrongly and then a lifestyle emerges that is, to say the least, a little way from the truth. The fact is, he is a young man and does like a party. But never, and I mean never, has he let it interfere with the job that he does. He, like the pro that he is, always makes sure that he is in good condition to deliver at testing and during race weekends. I have never had to go to him – we trust him totally. When he competed in that race over the winter on the snowmobiles, he used the alias of James Hunt to get rid of the press, but I’m sure that if he does that this year he will get mobbed.
| Source: grandprix247.com |
One of the most intriguing sideshows of the 2014 season will be whether or not Alonso and new teammate Kimi Raikkonen will gel within the most famous team in the sport.
The Finn – popularly known as the Iceman – has returned to the Scuderia with whom he won the 2007 Formula 1 World Championship – the Maranello outfit’s last title triumph.
Alonso said of Raikkonen, “I think he’s very talented so that is a huge help and a huge motivation for myself first, and also for the team, because the team knows it has to deliver a good car because Kimi will deliver a good result.”
“I know I need to deliver my best, if not I cannot be in front of Kimi, so that is only good and positive news for Ferrari,” said the two time World Champion.
Asked if two F1 World Championship titles were enough to satisfy his ambitions, Alonso said, “If you ask me this question in 10 years’ time I will tell you less, because two Championships are more than I could dream.”
“If you ask me right now and I am in a middle of a competition, I am hungry for victories; hungry for success – I will tell you that two Championships are not enough,” he added.
Lotus driver Romain Grosjean is not so sure Fernando Alonso will have an easy time alongside new Ferrari teammate Kimi Raikkonen in 2013.
Grosjean, however, may also be well placed to comment, given that he too has been paired in Formula 1 with both Alonso (2009) and more recently with Raikkonen at Lotus.
“Good luck to them!” he grinned to Brazil’s Totalrace. ”They are two very strong personalities. It will be interesting. Kimi is very much like Fernando in several respects. Both like to be number one, so we’ll see what happens.”
“If there is something I could learn from Kimi and Fernando it is that they never quit. Whenever they get into the car, they get 100 per cent from it, whether it is a good car, bad car, if it’s dry, wet.”
| Source: grandprix247.com |
Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton are the two highest paid drivers in Formula 1 this year according to a report by The Richest.
Alonso, starting his fifth year as a Ferrari driver, and Hamilton, in his second year with Mercedes, are reportedly each earning €20 million, with McLaren’s Jenson Button and quadruple wortld champion Sebastian Vettel banking €16 million from Red Bull.
Interestingly Kimi Raikkonen, who returns to Ferrari, is driving for €10 million this year half what his teammate Alonso is pocketing. The Finn was the last driver to win the world title for Ferrari when he did so back in 2007 during his first stint with the Maranello outfit. He reportedly received a similar amount back in 2009 to make for Alonso in the team.
Red Bull new boy Daniel Ricciardo will bank €2.5 million in his debut season with the world champion team.
Sergio Perez will be earning €2 million as a Force India driver, while his teammate Nico Hulkenberg does not feature in the top ten list.
Banking €1.5 million in 2014 will be Lotus driver Romain Grosjean, while his teammate Pastor Maldonado is thought to have sponsorship at his disposal amounting to €35 million from Venezuelan government oil company PDVSA. How much of that is payment to Lotus is unknown. (GP247)
Top 10 Formula 1 earners of 2014:
1. Fernando Alonso – Ferrari – €20 million ($27.14 million)
& Lewis Hamilton – Mercedes – €20 million ($27.14 million)
3. Jenson Button – McLaren – €16 million ($21.71 million)
& Sebastian Vettel – Red Bull – €16 million ($21.71 million)
5. Nico Rosberg – Mercedes – €11 million ($14.93 million)
6. Kimi Raikkonen – Ferrari – €10 million ($13.57 million)
7. Felipe Massa – Williams – €4 million ($5.43 million)
8. Daniel Ricciardo – Red Bull – €2.5 million ($3.3 million)
9. Sergio Perez – Force India – €2 million ($2.71 million)
10. Romain Grosjean – Lotus – €1.5 million ($2.04 million)
| Source: mtv3.fi |
“Kimi was my idol at a young age. I drove karts when he began his Formula One career. It would be great to drive against him in a race, a real honour.”
“I believe that all Scandinavians like Kimi; his style and his talent behind the wheel,” Ericsson told MTV3.
Ericsson does not feel he is like Räikkönen as a person.
“Kimi is Kimi and I’m myself.”
Ericsson said he’s been to Finland a few times but has no other connections to Finland, or actually… there’s one connection he’d like to mention: “Usually we beat Finland in ice hockey,” Ericcson bragged.
MB Partners are proud to announce they will be representing the commercial rights for 2007 Formula One world champion, Kimi Räikkönen in collaboration with his management and advisors, Blundell having been a long time friend and some time on-track competitor of Steve Robertson.
Räikkönen returns to Ferrari (where he won the championship) this year to join Fernando Alonso for the first of two seasons. He left the team and F1 in 2009 for a career in the World Rally Championship, before heading back to F1 with Lotus in 2012. Räikkönen achieved Lotus F1’s first race win at the 2012 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and last year secured another victory and a further seven podiums, to finish fifth in the championship standings.
Former F1 driver himself, and now Founder and CEO of MB Partners, Mark Blundell is looking forward to the partnership; “I have known Kimi’s management and advisors for a very long time and as such, we are working closely together on behalf of Kimi. He is without a doubt one of the best F1 drivers on the grid and combined with Ferrari are a powerful commercial proposition.”
Video: Kimi training with Mark Blundell in 2005
| Source: ferrari.com |
A good start with Kimi Raikkonen and James Allison on the same wavelength at the end of the second of four days of testing at the Jerez circuit in southern Spain.
“We have obtained some good baselines from which to continue the development of the F14 T,” said the Scuderia’s Technical Director, talking to ferrari.com. “We are working mainly on car reliability and so far, we can claim to be reasonably satisfied because, even though we are talking about a car that’s almost totally new, we haven’t encountered any particular problems. We are also happy with the data parameters we have seen in terms of cooling, as well as those relating to aerodynamic downforce: both of them have matched our expectations.”
Asked for an opinion on Kimi’s second debut in red, Allison had this to say. “He is still the same strong driver, with his usual phlegmatic approach,” added the Englishman with a smile. “It’s difficult for him to get over excited about something, but he gives the engineers the feedback they need to do their job. He might not say much, but he is incredibly accurate when it comes to explain what needs to be done to make the car quicker.”
Allison confessed to not having paid the slightest attention to what the other teams have been doing, therefore he is unable to give an opinion on how competitive the F14 T might be. “There’s too much to do to think about the others. We have to keep an eye on every detail, because it only takes the smallest thing to leave you stranded. Between now and Melbourne, we will have to organise every last detail to be ready for the first race.”
Ferrari.com: “Every time we go out on track we learn something new. This week the times don’t matter and the only thing that does is to do a good number of laps without any problems and fortunately, we have managed that on both days. The team is working hard and at the next test in Bahrain, we will continue to improve.”
Jenson Button’s McLaren topped the second day of pre-season Formula 1 testing at Jerez, as the Mercedes-engined teams demonstrated an early advantage in 2014.
Morning times: Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps 1. Jenson Button McLaren 1m36.094s 16 2. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1m37.762s +1.668s 17 3. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m38.272s +2.178s 15 4. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m39.008s +2.914s 13 5. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m41.798s +5.704s 33 6. Nico Rosberg Mercedes No time - 5 7. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault No time - 5 Afternoon times: Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps 1. Jenson Button McLaren 1m24.165s 43 2. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m24.812s +0.647s 47 3. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1m25.344s +1.179s 35 4. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m25.588s +1.423s 97 5. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m28.376s +4.211s 37 6. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m33.270s +9.105s 53 7. Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault 1m37.975s +13.810s 11 8. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1m38.320s +14.155s 8
Because of the wet start to the day, the morning programme began with the testing requested by Pirelli, relating to development of their wet weather tyres. The Scuderia was quickly able to assess the intermediate tyres, thus making the most of the time remaining and the progressively drying track to begin work on the car in preparation for the afternoon’s programme.
By the end of the day, Raikkonen had managed to complete a total of 47 laps, the fastest in a time of 1.24.812. He continued the task of checking the car’s functionality as well as trying a few set-up changes.
“Every time we go out on track we learn something new” – said Kimi. “This week the times don’t matter and the only thing that does is to do a good number of laps without any problems and fortunately, we have managed that on both days. The team is working hard and at the next test in Bahrain, we will continue to improve.”
Testing continues at this circuit tomorrow, when Fernando Alonso will make his season debut on track.
Team Quotes: Kimi Raikkonen’s mileage in first F1 test pleases Ferrari
“I am reasonably happy with what we have seen so far,” said Allison. “I don’t think there are any killers we have uncovered.
“The fault list is not a short one, it never is with a new car, but we are able to keep going out of the garage and doing the laps.
“Our relative lack of laps compared with the V8 era is not about the fundamental reliability of the package, it is about us making sure we don’t make mistakes.”
Allison said the lack of running throughout the field compared to 12 months ago was evidence not of poor reliability but simply the complication of the new rules.
“The point of these first two days is to get running, get the car programmed with the gazillion of numbers that you need to make it do its thing, and to make sure that the really basic building blocks of the car are correct,” he said.
“That includes stuff that is straightforward but completely fundamental to this car like doing all the things for cooling properly.
“There are a lot of different fluids in the car and they all have to be cooled, and that is really extremely important to allow us a foundation for the next two days of testing and the next two days before the season starts.”
Commentary and timing links to follow the tests:
- BBC Sport
- Sky Sports
- Italian updates
- Swedish updates
- German updates
- Greek live timing
- Spanish live timing
Autosport.com – Kimi Raikkonen: “For sure everybody wants to see more laps and we want to do more laps, but it is pretty normal with such a big change. It will take a little bit of time before we can run 100 per cent all the time and not have issues.
I think we have started pretty okay. I think the biggest challenge is getting all the new stuff working as we want, and working together. It is much trickier than what we are used to, but from the driving side I don’t think it is an awful lot different.
It is just the first day with all new stuff so it takes time to get things up to speed. One day to go, a lot of work to do, we know that. But we expected these first test days to learn things, so I really don’t feel like it is such a big difference to this year or any previous one.”
Ferrari.com: “We had a lot of new things to learn today. Even if we would have liked to do more laps, I think that for a first day it was alright. Towards the end, when the track was damp, we chose not to take any risks. Now we have a lot of work ahead of us, but all in all, we are pleased with our first day.”
Sky Sports: “It’s just the first day, there is still a long way to go,” he told reporters. “Lap times don’t mean anything, I was just learning about the car. We have started ok.. As I’ve said before, I’ve been here before and I know most of the people. It’s just a different team from last year, it’s not a new team.”
@f1zone Kimi on whether it was emotional to drive out of the garage in a Ferrari again: “No, not really” @adamcooperf1 Kimi Raikkonen on his new car and new rules: “In an ideal world I think there would probably be less buttons to push…”
Sky Sports interview with Kimi
Kimi Raikkonen went fastest on the first day of his Ferrari return as only six drivers set times on a stunted opening to Formula 1 2014 pre-season testing.
The Finn leapfrogged Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes one hour from the day’s end, with the Briton’s session ending prematurely after a front wing failure sent him crashing into the Turn 1 barriers.
Morning Times: Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps 1. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m27.820s 18 2. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1m36.530s +8.710s 11 3. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari no time 2 4. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes no time 2 5. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari no time 1 Afternoon Times: Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps 1. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m27.104s 31 2. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m27.820s +0.716s 18 3. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1m30.082s +2.978s 7 4. Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1m33.161s +6.057s 11 5. Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Renault 1m36.530s +9.426s 15 6. Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1m42.257s +15.153s 7 7. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault No time 3 8. Marcus Ericsson Caterham-Renault No time 1
As usual, Kimi Raikkonen’s evaluation was short and to the point, after the F14 T’s track debut. The Finn completed 32 laps on the Andalusian track, which was more than anyone else today.
Commentary and timing links to follow the tests:
- BBC Sport
- Sky Sports
- Italian updates
- Swedish updates
- German updates
- Greek live timing
- Spanish live timing
Sound of Kimi rolling out the F14-T
Ferrari requested fans to send in their questions to Kimi via social media and email with the hashtag #AskKimi, here’s what the top 10 got out of the ever-excited and chatty Iceman… ha.
| Source: autosport.com |
Kimi Raikkonen says there is no way of telling yet how his relationship with 2014 Ferrari Formula 1 team-mate Fernando Alonso will bear up to the heat of competition.
Although both drivers are excited about what their partnership should deliver, there are concerns that it could produce some tense moments if they end up battling wheel-to-wheel.
Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo admitted before Christmas that the line-up had its dangers, but equally he was sure both men would do what was best for the team.
Speaking to media after the launch of the new F14 T on Saturday, Raikkonen said the relationship between him and Alonso was good now – but admitted that things could be different when they are fighting on track.
“I don’t think there is any way of telling things right now,” said the Finn, who is now fully recovered from the back issues that he suffered last year.
“Every situation is different, but we know what we have to do.
“We have said before, we are going to race against each other like every year – it doesn’t matter who is your team-mate.
“We have a respect against each other and we try to come out on top, but we know what the team expects from us and time will tell what happens.
“There is a lot of talk from outside of all the problems and all those kinds of things, but inside the team we have a good feeling.
“We have to wait and see how it goes, and hopefully we can bring both titles back to the team.”
Alonso underlined that he expected both of them to do what was best for the team – even if it meant personal ambitions had to be sacrificed.
“We will follow whatever the team priority is, and we try to do our best to win both championships and bring back to Ferrari some of the success Ferrari had in the past,” he said.
“The best way to achieve that is to race at 100 per cent level every race, and try to always bring back the points to the team and ourselves.
“To do that we need to work in perfect harmony and follow what the team priority is, and what the team will tell us.”
Video: Press conference with the Ferrari drivers
| Source: ferrari.com |
Ferrari has revealed its 2014 Formula 1 car, the F14 T, that it hopes will allow it to fight for the world title this year.
The Maranello-based team’s 2014 challenger features a different nose approach to the other 2014 cars revealed so far, with a much flatter concept.
Ferrari has retained its pullrod front suspension concept in the new design.
The new car is the first that will have been influenced by incoming Ferrari technical chief James Allison, who arrived late last year following his switch from Lotus.
The car is scheduled to run in public for the first time at Jerez in Spain next week.
Ferrari is hoping that the change in regulations this year, with the arrival of 1.6-litre turbocharged engine, will help it finally deliver the world championship that has eluded it in recent years.
Last season proved a disappointment when, after starting the season with a competitive car, it failed to maintain a good enough development rate during the campaign.
As well as the all-new car for this year, Ferrari has welcomed back Kimi Raikkonen who replaces the Williams-bound Felipe Massa.
Kimi Raikkonen: “It’s nice to come back to the team with which I won my championship in 2007. The aim is the same: we want to do the best we can. We want to try and win races and try and win the championship if we can. I had to have a small operation, I didn’t really have a choice in order to be as pain free as possible for the coming season. It was a good time to have it done. If we are the strongest team – and I hope we’re going to be – then we both want to win. The car will tell if we can bring the championships back to Ferrari. I would say there are lots of other things, especially with the new rules, that will say what the results will be. But I think we are more than capable of being up there and fighting for the championship.”
Gallery, interview with Kimi, F14T Launch:
| Source: ferrari.com |
The car with which Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen will fly the Scuderia Ferrari flag in this year’s Formula 1 World Championship will be called the F14 T. Prancing Horse fans from around the globe chose the name in a ballot that’s run on line from 15 January to midnight last night.
“It’s nice to know the name of the car has been chosen by our fans,” Stefano Domenicali told www.ferrari.com. “The amazing number of votes shows just how popular Ferrari has always been and this will be, as always, a further impetus for us to do well this year!”
There was a total of 1,123,741 votes and the winning margin was just 19,104 or 1.7%, after a very close fight with F166 Turbo. The other three names on the list fared less well: third was F14 Scuderia (18.8%), followed by F14 Maranello (12.3%) and F616 (4.8%.)
The votes sent to the special new car site really came in from all four corners of the globe, 208 countries to be precise, over the nine days on which it was open. Italy topped the list, followed by Spain, the United States, the United Kingdom and France. Finland showed well in eighth, while among the BRICS nations, Russia came out on top in seventh, ahead of Brazil eleventh, India thirteenth, China fifteenth and South Africa thirty first. There were some last minute new entries, worth noting the presence of Cuba, Greenland, Palau and Equatorial Guinea. There’s no other way of describing it, the ballot to name the new Ferrari the F14 T has been a smash hit.
So see you on Saturday 25 January at 14.30 CET for the car launch with photos and videos available at 2014f1car.ferrari.com!
| Source: f1zone.net |
Kimi Raikkonen will put the first miles on the 2014 Ferrari when pre-season testing kicks off in Spain next week.
Raikkonen will drive on the first two days of the first pre-season test at Jerez next week.
The Finn will then hand over testing duties to Fernando Alonso for the final two days of the test.
Ferrari’s 2014 car will be named on Friday, before being unveiled to the world during an online launch on Saturday afternoon.
Alonso remains with the team for a fifth campaign while Raikkonen returns to the team with which he won the 2007 world title.
Testing Venue Date Jerez January 28-31 Sakhir February 19-22 Sakhir February 27-March 2
| Source: ferrari.com | full transcript below |
The first three “official” days of Kimi Raikkonen’s second stint with the Prancing Horse proved useful for him to familiarise himself with the technical aspects that go to make up part of a driver’s job wherever he is. In addition, it was also a chance for him to re-immerse himself in the special atmosphere only to be found at Ferrari. Below are five videos where Kimi talks about the fans, the team, F1, Maranello and the FF.
Kimi’s world – Raikkonen and the fans
Kimi’s world – Raikkonen and the team
Kimi’s world – Raikkonen and the Formula 1
Kimi’s world – Raikkonen and Maranello
Kimi’s world – Raikkonen and the FF
“My feeling is that it’s not going to be as different as people think. But I might be wrong.”
Q: How does it feel to be back at Maranello?
KR: It’s nice to come back here [Maranello], obviously it is nice to be back and seeing the people that were here when I was at Ferrari. Also some new people, but it has been so far very good. There are a lot of good people in the team, with a lot of knowledge. We have to the best and see where we end up, but there is the chance that we can do very well.
Q: What’s the target for the future?
KR: There’s only thing we try to do and that is to win championships. Hopefully as a team we can do that. It’s going to be difficult, especially with the new rules. It’s very hard to say who is where and how its going to be. Thats the only thing we try to do and that is to win championships. Hopefully as a team we can do that. It’s going to be difficult, especially with the new rules. It’s very hard to say who is where and how its going to be.
Q: Your return has made Ferrari fans very happy…
KR: As always nice to have fans and the fact that they are happy I came back to Ferrari is obviously a bonus. And hopefully we can get the results and make them even happier.
Q: How different will it be with new regulations and the all new Formula V6 turbo cars?
KR: My feeling is that driving the new cars will not be as difficult as people think. Hopefully we find out it is pretty simple. For sure it will be difficult for the technical people, all those who have to make a new engine, new gearboxes and all this. But it is not affecting so much the driver, I think. Sure we have new buttons and things to follow, let’s wait and see. It will be much easier to say after the first test.
Q: How do you feel about double points to be awarded at the final race of the season?
KR: This is the same for everybody It might help somebody or might be against somebody, and obviously people who it helps will like it. For me it doesn’t matter what it is. It’s the rule, so like it or not it isn’t going to change.
Q: What’s your favourite track?
KR: Spa is very nice track because it is sort of old fashioned, there ae some nice new circuitts too where they have done a good job. The United States track and India [were] quite nice. I quite liked it.
Q: You were in the Ferrari simulator?
KR: We did some work on the simulator and we will do more later, but mainly to check some of the buttons and see how things work.
Q: What are your thoughts on your new race engineer Antonio Spagnolo?
KR: We worked with him together before for two years, he was the data engineer for me. I know him from that time already, so basically it wasn’t too difficult and it was nice to see him. I saw him at some races and we spoke quickly when we passed each other in the paddock. For him it is a new challenge, but he knows the systems and has a lot of experience, so I thinbk it should be fine. Obviously we have to start from somewhere and then build things together. I don’t see any problems, or wy it shouldn’t be good. So it’s only exciting.
Raikkonen will be in action in a Ferrari, for the first time since 2009, during the first day of testing at Jerez on 28 January at the wheel of the team’s 2014 turbo powered car.
| Source: grandprix247.com |
Former F1 world champion Mika Hakkinen believes the style of driving required to maximise the new era V6 turbo will suit Kimi Raikkonen more than his Ferrari teammate Fernando Alonso.
In his column for Ilta-Sanomat, Finland’s first F1 world champion wrote, “I think Kimi’s driving style is really perfect for these turbo cars. Alonso pushes too hard, so I think Kimi will beat him.”
Hakkinen believes that Raikkonen’s return to a big team is ideal as the 2007 world champion will not have to worry about financial matters, and thus enable him to focus on driving to his best ability.
“Everyone knows that Ferrari has huge resources to develop self during the season. The development will not stop, even if good engineers leave. And Kimi does not have to be worried about the financial side, Ferrari has what it takes,” concluded Hakkinen.
In an exclusive column for AUTOSPORT, double world champion MIKA HAKKINEN gives his view on Kimi Raikkonen’s Ferrari return and explains why he rates Valtteri Bottas so highly.
To see Kimi Raikkonen back in a Ferrari this year will be fantastic for the Finnish fans, but it will not be easy for him going up against Fernando Alonso.
When I was at McLaren many years ago and a new driver came in, I had an advantage because I knew all the mechanics and the car was tailor-made for me, so I wouldn’t give an easy time to a newcomer.
Alonso knows Ferrari very well and has been there for four years; Kimi knows the team from before, but that was many years ago so let’s wait and see.
When you have two top drivers in the same team, the pressure on each one to perform is three times higher. That pressure can sometimes be distracting for the driver, although it influences people differently.
When I was team-mate to Nigel Mansell at McLaren in 1995, and also Ayrton Senna in ’93, there was a lot of tension, which disturbed the whole team. It is not necessarily a positive boost.
Even if the drivers don’t cause problems with their actions, it can still make things difficult. I’m not saying they will not do a good job because they are both great drivers, but it could unsettle the team unless things are very well managed between them. It’s not so much about what happens on the track, but off it.
But remember, Kimi is not the only Finnish driver on the grid. It’s no secret that I’m working with Valtteri Bottas.
While the results don’t look so impressive, he has been doing a fantastic job and has succeeded very well in his first season in Formula 1. He’s consistent and his pace is good.
That consistency is so important in gathering data and the understanding of the development that’s needed to make the car go faster. He has done fantastic work establishing himself in F1, working very well with the team and getting respect from everyone at Williams.
When I was at Team Lotus in 1991 and ’92, my first two years in F1, I have to admit I had so much to learn about how F1 functioned and understanding the technical side of it.
Like Valtteri, I was learning when the car was not really up to speed and in my first season I scored just two points. But this is a time when you have to fight, really go for it even if you are fighting for 18th or 19th place. You have to keep your foot down all the time and focus on developing the car in a difficult situation.
When a driver is not winning or getting good results, there are a lot of doubts. People might ask why Valtteri is not winning, but it’s important to collect the facts and understand the reality.
When you look at the timesheet, it doesn’t always tell the truth to the fans and I have great confidence in what Valtteri has done so far.
It took me seven years to score my first grand prix win. That shows you must have a long-term view, have trust in people and believe in yourself. There are days when you cannot win and you must analyse every little detail of why that’s happening.
Just changing things all the time is not the path to success. It’s about building up and developing together with the team.
There were question marks over me at times, but all the time my teams had trust in me. McLaren told me, ‘Yes, you are the fastest driver, just wait and we will give you the car’.
I trusted them and then I won the world championship with them. Even though there were hard times along the way, I took the right decision and Valtteri is doing the same thing. He believes in himself, understands the reasons why the results don’t come.
The most amazing thing is how much better he was in his first year than I was, because there is so much data available.
When I started racing with Lotus, I was looking at Ayrton Senna’s data from when he was racing for Lotus [four years earlier]! But today you get so much data from the track and from simulators that helps you to understand.
Valtteri has done very well to learn from all that. When he was test driver, he studied how the team works, how the mechanics operate, how they build gearboxes, exhausts, suspension, aerodynamics to prepare for F1. That was a great training ground.
And he has always remained positive, motivating people, not showing too much emotion and complaining all the time.
That’s how Valtteri has approached the whole season and it means he will be prepared when he is driving a more competitive car.
Ferrari are to reveal their 2014 car on January 25, the day after announcing the results of a competition to name it.
Starting on Wednesday, votes can be cast for one of five options – the F14 T, F14 Maranello, F14 Scuderia, F166 Turbo or F616 – with the winner to be announced on Friday January 24 at 11am GMT.
Ferrari will give a first glimpse of the car by releasing photos the following day (at 1.30pm GMT), as well as “a series of multimedia tools that will outline its main technical characteristics”.
Much like their rivals, there will be no official reveal as such, with Ferrari instead set to wheel out their challenger at the first pre-season test, which starts at Jerez on January 28.
Lotus owner Gerard Lopez has moved to allay fears the Enstone based team is on the verge of collapse. When the FIA issued the official 2014 entry list recently, Lotus’ place was marked with a conspicuous asterisk, fuelling rumours of financial doom.
“We just had the wrong team name on the list, namely the one of two years ago,” Lopez told Germany’s Auto Motor und Sport on Wednesday. “I can assure you — everything is still the same.”
Despite the reassurance, however, many wonder if the now-terminally delayed ‘Quantum’ buy-in has derailed Lotus, who have turned to the lucratively-backed Venezuelan Pastor Maldonado to replace unpaid Finn Kimi Raikkonen.
Lopez insists Raikkonen has now been “partly paid”. “He will get the rest,” he added.
Leo Turrini: “Kimi laughs like a child. Honestly, I have seen many drivers, but one in a state of ecstasy like him I have not seen. You see that Kimi is really happy and feels to be back home.”
So, where were we?
Ah, yes. I left the narration of my encounter with the Holy Drinker (*Kimi) pending… but the picture (taken, honor to his merit, by the ubiquitous Renato Bisignani, Ferrari’s P.R.) I took with him already said almost everything in the sense that in such circumstances (really random), it is not that we can leave a disquisition about the Maximum World Systems.
I came in to the Montana Restaurant (*a famous Restaurant near Maranello where you can often meet Ferrari’s staff) for a disastrous (*maybe for the enormous amount of food and drinks) convivial ceremony with Cola (aka Luca Colajanni, perfidious predecessor of Bisi). We settle in a small room, under a beautiful blow-up (*really big picture) of Alonso. While we were on the first dish paccheri (* a kind of good Italian pasta), a waiter came to us to offer the Lambrusco wine. Then we hear a voice (*it’s Kimi speaking): “And where is your friend Cat’s Eye (*Cat’s Eye, in Italian Occhi di Gatto, is a famous bloggara, a girl who reads Leo’s blog and knows Leo)?” I got a bit surprised and turned around to see Kimi instead of Alonso (*who was more probable to meet). I reply: “Truly, I should convey the greetings of Odin and Mazgiorg (*two bloggers who are Kimi supporters of course)”. I say: (*Leo is speaking to his bloggars now) “Hey! Now I want to see how they translate this post in Oulu and Turku languages, ehm ehm” (*Leo knows that his articles are translated in more than 12 countries and so he is curious about how they will translate these strange bloggers’ names!). “Nice guys”, he (*Kimi) says.
As the 2007 World Champion (in a t-shirt despite the cold, two mysterious tattoos at the biceps, a cap, which is really similar to U2′s The Edge one, Beautiful Day, One, With or Without You, Walk On, Magnificent) is surrounded by the entire squadron (race engineer A. Spagnolo, the motorists, the logistics officer Balocchi, Bisi and blah blah blah), the conversation moves on to really important things. That is: we talked about a match of ice hockey to play in Fanano, against the formation led by Cat’s Eye, excuse me, by Alonso. “But I suggest to keep the news secret, because every nonsense that I write on your behalf, they immediately translate it into Finnish…….so let’s defend your privacy”.
Kimi laughs like a child. Honestly I’ve seen pilots in fits of laughter but it was indeed rare that I happen to meet one in a state of ecstasy like that. You can easily note he is really happy… to be back at home. Or maybe, he did not understand what kind of missile (*rocket) a certain Adrian Newey is going to extract from the cellars…..
Come on! I explain some bizarre theories of a certain “Nelson66,” our blog’s technician (*Nelson is a blog reader who is an engineer and often he writes about technical aspects of the GP…). “Nice guy”, repeats the blond. So I tell him the story about that time at Interlagos (*2007) and about the cuddly (*the crying) I took a few days later, due to the unexpected surprise of victory. He laughs and says: “Are you ready for the next one?” I do not know if he was referring to the cuddly or at the world title in 2014. With this outstanding mystery narrated, I wish a good weekend to all.
| Source: Ferrari.com |
Today, Kimi Raikkonen embarked on his first week’s work since starting his second career stint in red.
The Finn arrived in Maranello this morning and will spend three days with the engineers and in the simulator.
“It’s good to be back at work,” Kimi told during a break in proceedings. “I began by getting used to all the new systems and procedures that we will use this year. From this point of view, the simulator is really very useful. It’s true there’s lots to do, but the workload is not much different to what it was in the past.
“For me, these days in Maranello are also an opportunity to be with the team and spend a bit more time with my many friends here.”
Kimi will stay in Maranello until Wednesday this week, proving that the Finn is keen to renew his relationship with the team that was his home from 2007 to 2009 as quickly as possible.
The two Scuderia Ferrari cars will carry the numbers 7 and 14 for the 2014 season, as confirmed by the FIA today. On his return to racing in red, Kimi Raikkonen will have the number 7 on his car, the same one he had last year. “There’s no particular story linked to it,” the Finn told. “It’s the number I already had last year and I saw no reason to change it. I like it which is good enough isn’t it?”
Fernando’s choice had a more specific basis, as he had already revealed back on 20th December at a Santander Bank event in Madrid. “It has always brought me luck, dating back to 14th July 1996 when, at the age of 14, I won the World championship in a kart that had the number 14,” he explained. “Let’s see if it will still bring me luck.”
The official entry list to the 2014 FIA Formula One World Championship:
|Sebastian VETTEL (DEU)||RED BULL RACING (AUT)||Infiniti Red Bull Racing||Red Bull Racing||Renault|
|Daniel RICCIARDO (AUS)||RED BULL RACING(AUT)||Infiniti Red Bull Racing||Red Bull Racing||Renault|
|Lewis HAMILTON (GBR)||MERCEDES-BENZ GRAND PRIX LTD (DEU)||Mercedes Gp Petronas Formula One||Mercedes||Mercedes|
|Nico ROSBERG (DEU)||MERCEDES-BENZ GRAND PRIX LTD (DEU)||Mercedes Gp Petronas Formula One||Mercedes||Mercedes|
|Fernando ALONSO (ESP)||FERRARI SpA (ITA)||Scuderia Ferrari||Ferrari||Ferrari|
|Kimi RAIKKONEN (FIN)||FERRARI SpA (ITA)||Scuderia Ferrari||Ferrari||Ferrari|
|Romain GROSJEAN (FRA)||LOTUS RENAULT F1 LTD (GBR)**||Lotus F1 Team||Lotus||Renault|
|Pastor MALDONADO (VEN)||LOTUS RENAULT F1 LTD (GBR)**||Lotus F1 Team||Lotus||Renault|
|Jenson BUTTON (GBR)||VODAFONE MCLAREN RACING LTD (GBR)||McLaren Mercedes||McLaren||Mercedes|
|Kevin MAGNUSSEN (DEN)||VODAFONE MCLAREN RACING LTD (GBR)||McLaren Mercedes||McLaren||Mercedes|
|Nico HULKENBERG (DEU)||FORCE INDIA FORMULA 1 TEAM LTD (IND)||Sahara Force India F1 Team||Force India||Mercedes|
|Sergio PEREZ MENDOZA (MEX)||FORCE INDIA FORMULA 1 TEAM LTD(IND)||Sahara Force India F1 Team||Force India||Mercedes|
|Adrian SUTIL (DEU)||SAUBER MOTORSPORT AG (CHE)||Sauber F1 Team||Sauber||Ferrari|
|Esteban GUTIERREZ (MEX)||SAUBER MOTORSPORT AG (CHE)||Sauber F1 Team||Sauber||Ferrari|
|Jean-Eric VERGNE (FRA)||SCUDERIA TORO ROSSO SPA (ITA)||Scuderia Toro Rosso||Scuderia Toro Rosso||Renault|
|Daniil KVYAT (RUS)||SCUDERIA TORO ROSSO SPA (ITA)||Scuderia Toro Rosso||Scuderia Toro Rosso||Renault|
|Felipe MASSA (BRA)||WILLIAMS GD PRIX ENGENEERING LTD (GBR)||Williams Team F1||Williams||Mercedes|
|Valtteri BOTTAS (FIN)||WILLIAMS GD PRIX ENGENEERING LTD (GBR)||Williams Team F1||Williams||Mercedes|
|Jules BIANCHI (FRA)||MANOR GRAND PRIX RACING LTD (RUS)**||Marussia F1 Team||Marussia||Ferrari|
|Max CHILTON (GBR)||MANOR GRAND PRIX RACING LTD (RUS)**||Marussia F1 Team||Marussia||Ferrari|
|TBA||1MALAYSIA RACING TEAM SDN BHD||Caterham F1 Team||Caterham||Renault|
|TBA||1MALAYSIA RACING TEAM SDN BHD||Caterham F1 Team||Caterham||Renault|
* For the duration of his F1 career, Sebastian Vettel chose N°5
** Subject to confirmation
F1Racing magazine have chosen Kimi as their Personality of the Year 2013, here is a snippet of his accolade:
In the January issue there is also a feature on the financial situation at Lotus and how their relationship with Kimi fell apart over it:
| Source: autosport.com |
Kimi Raikkonen has always been his own man, and when he tired of F1 in 2009, he set off for a two-year sabbatical. AUTOSPORT looks back at his rallying, NASCAR and sportscar adventures.
KIMI IN RALLYING
The Iceman became the Snowman pretty quickly. Shortly after starting his very first event with the Citroen C4 WRC in 2010 – the Arctic Rally in Finland, a warm-up for Rally Sweden – spectators were treated to the surreal sight of the 2007 Formula 1 world champion digging his own car out of a snowbank.
That would never have happened at Ferrari. But it was a skill that Raikkonen was to practise again on Rally Sweden itself a couple of weeks later, where the icy stages also take no prisoners. The man who Sir Stirling Moss once described as “the fastest driver in the world” turned out to be a dab hand with a shovel as well.
Of course, this was far from being Raikkonen’s first foray into world rallying – that took place on his home Rally Finland in 2009, at the wheel of a Super 2000 Abarth Grande Punto.
He was straight into the top three, fighting with future Intercontinental Rally Challenge and Super 2000 champion Juho Hanninen and Anton Alen, a former 1000 Lakes Group N class winner and son of rally legend Markku. Kimi is very close to the Alen family – one of his houses in Finland is just across the road from Markku’s – so he probably picked up a few tips.
Raikkonen undoubtedly felt his stunning performance in Finland would translate seamlessly into something similar in the World Rally Car category. Plenty of others thought exactly the same. But being competitive in the Super 2000 class is one thing, taking on Sebastien Loeb in the same car is another.
To be fair to Raikkonen, he approached it with an open mind. “I’ve always admired rally drivers for their skills and bravery,” he said at the time. “I just wanted to see if I could do it myself.”
It only took him three WRC events to finish in the points (with eighth in Jordan), and on the following round he scored what would remain his best result: fifth in Turkey.
That event, as Europe lay beneath an ash cloud that grounded aviation, was the prelude to an interesting journey home for most people. Apart from Kimi that is, who somehow managed to persuade his pilot to take off. He was relaxing at home before most of his Citroen colleagues had thought about boarding their coach back to Paris. It took them three days.
There were some low points as well. Raikkonen let out an unmanly yelp as his car went off the edge in El Cubilete, Mexico, followed by a string of words that are unprintable but extremely amusing.
While Kimi’s co-driver Kaj Lindstrom no doubt got sick of a scene acted out at hotels around the world most mornings – every Citroen driver (bar one) sitting patiently in the minibus, waiting to leave, while Lindstrom frantically called Kimi’s room from reception – Loeb was quite chuffed. “It’s good, because normally it’s me who is late,” he pointed out – directly from the minibus.
For his second season in the WRC, Raikkonen’s budget was significantly reduced, forcing him to go with his own team – Ice1 Racing – in a Citroen DS3 WRC funded by a variety of private sponsors. He didn’t complete a full season, tackling nine events in total with a best result of sixth in Jordan and Germany.
Under the WRC Team rules, he was obliged to contest two events outside Europe, and his decision to skip Rally Australia because it was “a long way” fell foul of that regulation.
Unsurprisingly, the Australian stewards did not accept the geographical location of their event as a mitigating circumstance and Ice1 Racing was excluded from the teams’ championship (although Raikkonen finished 10th in the drivers’ standings, for the second year running).
Then came the call to Lotus, but Kimi doesn’t think he would be where he is today without his two years in rallying.
“You cannot compare the two and say that this definitely helped,” he points out. “But when I stopped in F1 I was ready to do something different and challenge myself, and without that I don’t think I’d have come back.”
Raikkonen might not have had the results he wanted in the WRC, but he brought some real star quality to the championship with an army of passionate fans.
To our knowledge, Ken Block is the only other rally driver who has been followed into the toilet and photographed there… David Evans
KIMI IN NASCAR
With his rallying sojourn fraying at the seams, Raikkonen spent a month in the US in 2011, running two tests and two races with Kyle Busch Motorsports.
His first experience of NASCAR-style machinery came in a truck test at the half-mile Gresham Motorsports Park oval in Georgia. And it didn’t take long for Kimi to make an impression on the team.
“A lot of time when we test, the driver will go out and mosey around for a couple of laps to get their bearings and get familiar with the racetrack,” says KBM team manager Rick Ren.
“He didn’t do that. When he went down pitroad he was wide open and that just shows his ability and confidence in his car control. I’m not used to people doing that.”
A further test followed at Rockingham, before Raikkonen made his Truck Series debut around the 1.5-mile Charlotte Motor Speedway. Kimi finished 15th and a week later contested the Nationwide race at the same track in a car run by KBM, but entered by Joe Nemechek’s team.
“The truck race didn’t go as good as I hoped it would, but the car race was going very well until he had a pitroad speeding penalty,” Ren recalls.
“It just ended up being not quite such a good day. We were running about seventh and that’s very respectable.”
But the race wasn’t without its dramas. As anyone who heard Kimi’s Abu Dhabi radio chat is aware, he knows what he’s doing – even if that means failing to wear the correct protective gear…
“When he first came here I looked at his shoes and I told him, ‘I don’t think you’ll be able to run those shoes over here’ and he’s like, ‘Yeah, yeah, yeah that’s what I always race with’, so he didn’t want to put the heat shields on. The floorboards get exceptionally hot in NASCAR vehicles, maybe 125-130 degrees.
“But he didn’t want to put his booties on as we call them and we are a bit into the race and he comes on the radio and says, ‘My feet are getting very hot! Never mind, I will put them out the window!’
“I thought that was the funniest thing I ever heard on the pitbox. And that was the only time he brought it up in the whole race.”
The team was keen to run Raikkonen in more races, but he never returned its call. Andrew van de Burgt
Peugeot motorsport boss Olivier Quesnel had long since promised Kimi Raikkonen, then competing in World Rallying with sister marque Citroen, a go in one of his 908 HDi LMP1 turbodiesels and duly delivered in August 2011.
Quesnel, who was in charge of both marques, always denied that there was anything more to the test, but insiders insist that an outing at the Le Mans 24 Hours was discussed at some point. And quite rightly so after Raikkonen’s performance during his short try-out at Motorland Aragon.
“Kimi was quick straight out of the box,” says one of Peugeot’s retinue of drivers. “He got in the car and matched the quickest time of the test inside four laps.
“He arrived late, I think, didn’t make any fuss and didn’t bother too much about the seating position, and bang, he did the time. He did around 25 laps and then went home.”
Raikkonen apparently liked the car, apart from its powersteering, but any chance of a race outing as good as disappeared three months later when it was announced he’d be returning to F1 with Lotus.
And then it disappeared for good when Peugeot called time on its sportscar programme another couple of months after that.
By Gary Watkins
Kimi on his LeMans experience (from F1Racing magazine Nov 2011 issue):
“The Le Mans car was interesting but, to be honest, the steering was quite sh*t and the windscreen was really strange – it sort of distorts the view… maybe because it’s very round”
“I can’t imagine what it’s like with oil and mess after you’ve been racing for a long time. But I enjoyed the experience and the car felt good.”
“Biggest problem is my foot. It’s burning. I don’t understand how this car can be so hot. My ass is even burning in here!”
“They [the feet] are burning, but I get them off the floor so it’s better. Need drink.”
Kimi Raikkonen’s official website has taken a fresh look for 2014 with a new theme aligning with his return to the Scuderia Ferrari.
The F1 team’s official website has also published a picture of Kimi in red for the first time since the deal was signed.