Kimi’s Column – Back to business in December
I can honestly tell I that I did not stress this ICA affair at all. Nothing had changed since the stewards went through it after the race at Brazil. One team just wanted to have a go at it.
Now it is over. I think it is good for the sport and obviously it is good for me and for Ferrari.
Earlier on, I had lost the title twice in the final stages of the season. I can still feel how it hurt. For me, winning is everything. Now I can say that it feels even better while you have lost it before you finally succeed to win it.
We did a great job as a team. We had a good plan how to deal with the season. We had some difficult moments, and we focused on doing our own things and the final results say it all. We showed to the whole world that you should always try your best until the very finish.
When you clinch the championship like this, you will never forget this great feeling. I have felt great the whole time since the Brazilian Grand Prix. Now that this last mess off track is wiped off, I can enjoy my holiday even a little bit more.
On Friday, I waited to hear the news at home in Switzerland. We have had a nice autumn weather. I have been working out, and of course, chilling out with my closest friends. It is good to have a chance to charge the batteries while it does not take that long to dash along again everywhere. I have heard that there is a lot of programme for me in the beginning of December.
The team has been working very hard. They tested in Barcelona, and from what I have heard, everything looks very promising. I am looking forward to start testing again. I will start in Jerez, in early December.
It will be very interesting to feel how the driving is while now the wheels will be spinning in every corner.
After the test, there will be the FIA prize-giving ceremony in Monaco. It feels great to be going there to get the championship trophy for the first time in my career.
I have never been so keen to go to these kind of gala evenings, but this time it is different. Obviously my festive spirit is sky high, as we have so much to celebrate with the team.
Kimi finally in The Hall of Fame!
From Formula1.com/teams and drivers/hall of fame
As expected due to the recent ICA court hearing, the official F1
website took their time in hosting Kimi his rightfully earned place in
the Hall of Fame. Nice one Kimi, enjoy sitting there in F1 history! Also below, Formula1.com look back over Kimi’s career:
Fast-tracked into the sport with the shortest CV on four wheels, the
unknown newcomer who came from nowhere and said next to nothing
immediately proved he knew exactly what he was doing: driving a Formula
One car as fast as it could possibly go. The car couldn’t always keep
up with his talent and it took seven seasons for Kimi ‘Iceman’
Raikkonen to become World Champion. Notoriously inanimate and
uncommunicative, the silent speedster’s frozen expression in fact
masked the hidden depths in one of the coolest, most original
characters in the sport’s history…
Kimi Matias Raikkonen spent
his childhood in a house built by his great grandfather in Espoo, a
suburb of the Finnish capital, Helsinki. To provide for Kimi, born on
October 17, 1979, and his older brother Rami, their hard-working
parents Matti and Paula toiled, respectively, as a road builder and an
office clerk. Money was scarce but the Raikkonens were a happy family
and their humble homestead surrounded by open countryside was an ideal
environment for the two rambunctious youngsters to flex their racing
muscles. At first (when Kimi was just three years old) the brothers
tore around on miniature motocross bikes fitted with training wheels. A
move to karts paved the way for Kimi (who began competitive karting at
10) and Rami (who eventually became a successful rally driver) to make
rapid progress in motorsport, though it came at a cost. Matti had to
work nights as a taxi driver and nightclub bouncer and funds diverted
to karting meant plans to replace the outside lavatory with a proper
bathroom in the family home had to be postponed.
reluctant student who used his schoolbag as a sled to slide down
snow-covered hills, enjoyed winter sports, especially ice hockey,
though he eventually gave it up because he hated getting up for
early-morning practice. At 16 he left school and enrolled in a course
for mechanics, believing this skill might be the only way to stay
involved in motorsport. Very soon his mechanical expertise, and the
need for family funding, became superfluous, as Kimi’s natural talent
for driving fast led to sponsored rides.
Following a rapid
series of successes in Finnish, Nordic and European karting, he jumped
into a racing car and promptly won two British-based Formula Renault
championships. In the fall of 2000, despite having just 23 car races to
his name, he was given a test by the Sauber Formula One team. Impressed
by his immediate pace and assured approach, Sauber shrewdly signed the
21-year old to drive for them in 2001. His having short-circuited the
conventional route to the top provoked fierce debate over his right,
let alone his readiness, to race at the pinnacle of motorsport.
Raikkonen rapidly silenced his critics (he finished sixth in his Grand
Prix debut) and attracted the attention of McLaren, who saw him as a
likely successor to the retiring two-time champion, Mika Hakkinen.
Finn after another proved to be a good thing for McLaren, for whom Kimi
the ‘Iceman’ never gave less than his maximum, always driving to a
personal limit that at least equalled, sometimes exceeded, the best of
his peers. Experts endlessly praised his seamless, straightforward,
mostly mistake-free style. “I never really think about what I’m doing,”
Kimi said in a rare outburst of self-analysis. “I just do it.”
five seasons at McLaren coincided with a period of unevenly performing,
often unreliable, cars. Yet he finished second in the championship
twice (2003 and 2005), won nine races and finished in the top three on
36 occasions. His podium appearances and subsequent TV interviews
exposed him to public scrutiny under which he tended to squirm and
fidget, tugging his ears, rubbing his nose and trying to hide beneath
his baseball cap. He seldom smiled, spoke sparingly in a mumbled
monotone, then all but ran for the nearest exit.
Yet in his
private life the poker-faced enigma’s icy reserve was prone to
spectacular bouts of thawing out. ‘Drunken Race Ace Kimi Bounced Out Of
Lapdance Club For Fiddling With His Gearstick!’ shrieked a headline in
a British tabloid newspaper. Spanish media gleefully reported that the
vodka-loving Flying Finn was found lying fast asleep outside a bar
embracing an inflatable rubber dolphin. In Monaco he was filmed
cavorting on a yacht, swaying unsteadily on the upper deck then falling
onto a lower level where he landed on his head.
“What I do in my
private life doesn’t make me drive any slower,” the free-spirited
speedster insisted. In truth, the Iceman’s private life was running
smoothly and he was well-settled on the domestic front, having in 2004
married Jenni Dahlman, a gorgeous Finnish fashion model and former Miss
Scandinavia. At their sumptuous Swiss home there was plenty of room for
their two dogs and Kimi’s car collection. Asked to name his most prized
possessions, he replied: “My wife and my Ferrari Enzo.”
he began driving a Ferrari Formula One car for a living, having been
hired (for a reported $41 million a year) to fill the considerable void
left by the departing seven-time World Champion Michael Schumacher,
whose unrivalled work ethic and team leadership qualities were not part
of a Raikkonen repertoire that seemed more akin to another past
champion. A week before his debut with the team, Ferrari’s new recruit
was in Finland, winning a dangerous snowmobile race he had entered
under the alias of ‘James Hunt.’ When the same ‘James Hunt’ later
competed in a powerboat race dressed in a gorilla suit Kimi said he
invoked the name of his hero as a riposte to the media
sensationalization of his private life.
He got off to a fast
start with Ferrari, winning the season-opener from pole position,
though by the penultimate race he was third in the driver standings,
behind the McLaren team mates Fernando Alonso, seeking a third
successive title, and Lewis Hamilton, the record-breaking rookie.
Though Raikkonen had won more races, five to their four apiece, he
remained the long shot among the trio of contenders at the final race,
in Brazil. The phlegmatic Finn delivered sensationally, winning the
race and the 2007 World Drivers’ Championship by a single point.
the podium the new champion swigged as much champagne as he sprayed
and, grinning at last, the Iceman broke his silence with a veritable
torrent of words. “I’m very happy. I came from pretty much nothing but
my family, friends and sponsors helped me get here. People will
probably look differently at me and make up more stories about me. But
I am going to lead my life as I want and that’s it.”