The IceMan Rules Them All
Kimi’s comments from www.kimiraikkonen.com
– "It is very diffcult for me to explain in words what I am feeling at the
moment – it is an incredible emotion," Kimi said after winning the race and
the 2007 Championship. "I want to thank the team for everything they have
done this year. Even when we went through some difficult times and it looked as
though there was no way to fight back, we never gave up and this work produced
its reward today.
Thanks also to my parents, to my wife Jenni and everyone who
believed in me. I have achieved what I have been after for a long time. Now
everything else will be an extra. Today, Felipe’s help was vital and he was
amazing. We had to get a one-two and then see what the others did. This time,
things went out our way and the unexpected did happen. This has been a very
nice year for me during which I have enjoyed Formula 1 like never before. In
Ferrari, I have found a great family and I am proud to have won the title with
It’s been great to read so many articles and reports of praise on Kimi Raikkonen, however, it does feel weird to hear it all of a sudden especially when they mostly wrote negative things about not only his style on the track but his lifestyle. The carbreaker, the playboy, the drinker – they’re all exaggerations of the F1 circus. Hence, why he is called the new James Hunt of F1.
Now, the media are now giving positive appraise but it’s exactly what we (the fans) have been thinking of Kimi since he joined Formula One back in 2001 with Sauber, who is now team BMW-Sauber. Moving towards McLaren just after his debut year, he was a shooting star never to fall. It had been a long partnership at McLaren Mercedes, but those five years with the silver team were ridden with reliability bugs and Kimi was always getting close to the title, but never reaching it. He had been fighting single handedly in the last three years and becoming vice-champion twice, in 2003 and 2005, it was becoming clear that his man has been let down. Amidst the times of gloom were also times of glory – but one thing remained clear, he never gave up.
He was compared to Stirling Moss – a fantastic and fast driver never to have won a championship. It seemed for a moment in his career that Kimi would remain in this shadow. But the Scuderia Ferrari was his next step, a leap infact, as he was taking on the task of becoming the Red team’s new Michael Schumacher and proving his critics wrong. And he has done it. Six wins, six podiums, six fastest laps, and three pole positions on his debut season with Ferrari is not half bad.
Here are some snippets of those admiring Kimi for what he always was – they just didn’t realise it until Sunday!
BBC Review: Raikkonen The Playboy King – While his rivals were in Australia preparing for the first Grand Prix of the season, Kimi Raikkonen was back home in Finland taking part in a snowmobile race.
To ensure no-one found out about it, he entered the event under a false name – James Hunt, a choice of pseudonym that says much more about Formula One’s new world champion than the man himself ever will.
Hunt, the 1976 world champion, is the man who most personifies the image of the Formula One playboy lifestyle, and Raikkonen is the modern driver who comes closest to following the model.
So it is in some ways a surprise that, despite his elevated status within F1, Raikkonen has virtually no profile with the public at large.
In other ways, though, it is not.
He answers the media’s questions with as few words as he can get away with, in a metallic monotone of a voice, refusing to reveal almost any part of his real personality to the media.
ITV: Kimi’s career in pictures – Kimi Raikkonen had just one full season of car racing behind him when he made his Formula 1 debut, but he soon proved that he belonged at the top level. Winning the title, however, would take a little longer… We chart his route to glory.
Quick learner – After a handful of races in 1999, Raikkonen contested the 2000 Formula Renault UK Championship and swept to title victory.
First F1 test – With the FRenault title clinched several rounds early, Kimi skipped the final races and started a Formula 1 testing programme with Sauber instead. The Finnish novice stunned the team with pace, and Sauber resolved to bring him straight into F1 in 2001…
Kimi fully deserves it, says manager – “He’s become the champion of the world – it’s what he’s always wanted!,” he told ITV Sport’s Louise Goodman.
“And bless him he really deserved it. He has kept his mouth shut, has done the job and up pops the championship.
“For me he is by far the best driver, the coolest kid in the world and today is an example of what he is about.”
"To be honest, yes I did [think he could do it], I have felt very positive all weekend, as has Kimi,” he said. "As with every race he steps into and it spreads onto me.
“I have got to tell you that a lot of the press around here are pretty happy that he’s pulled it off from what looked like a pretty slim chance, he went and done it. Fantastic.”