Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari, Baku City Circuit, 2017

Raikkonen says he’s in F1 ‘purely for racing – it’s not the nicest place to hang around’

2017 Belgian Grand Prix

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Formula One is “not the nicest place to just hang around” according to Kimi Raikkonen, who said he wouldn’t stay in the sport if he didn’t think he had a serious change of winning.

Raikkonen, who signed a new one-year contract with Ferrari earlier this week, said the attraction of returning to F1 for a 16th season is “purely the racing”.

“The rest, not. I enjoy the racing, and obviously I want to do well. If I wouldn’t feel that I can go fast, I wouldn’t be happy in myself with my driving, I wouldn’t be here.”

“I have zero interest to waste my time or the team’s time to be a part of it. It’s not the nicest place to just hang around. The racing is the main thing.”

“There’s a lot of other sides of F1 but as long as racing is the biggest part, that’s it, and as long as I feel myself that I can win races and fight for championships then that’s fine. When I don’t feel like that I will be the first guy to do something else.”

Raikkonen says he’s been performing better in the car than he was at the start of the season.

“We want to do well, you want to improve,” he said. “I guess you always find things to do better and try to find more speed. Lately it’s been a bit better.”

“We’ve been feeling a bit more comfortable and been able to drive as we want and the result suddenly looks a bit better. I’m confident that we are doing right things and getting where we want to.”

2017 Belgian Grand Prix

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 14 comments on “Raikkonen says he’s in F1 ‘purely for racing – it’s not the nicest place to hang around’”

    1. This “WE are driving a bit better”, “WE are more comfortable” freaks me out a little.
      Sounds a touch george orwell to me. Or ken kesey :)

    2. His WE is always himself…thats always the way he says..nothing strange about it..

    3. I can’t help but think Kimi would enjoy GT racing so much more, or perhaps even the WEC though there possibly is no challenge there right now.

      1. digitalrurouni
        24th August 2017, 17:09

        He will never be allowed to win as long as Vettel is his teammate. He should move to GT racing.

      2. @xtwl Rallycross would be right up his alley. Pros of rallying and wheel-to-wheel racing combined.

        1. And he has off-road / rally experience.

        2. @huhhii I think he might enjoy it but won’t expect him to excel. He didn’t set the world ablaze when he raced in WRC either.

          Would love to see him try though. Basically Liberty media should do a double event at Hockenheim like they do with the DTM now. That would be fun.

          1. @xtwl Considering how little experience and practice Kimi had compared to other WRC drivers, I’d say setting world ablaze is exactly what he did. Mistake-prone but mighty quick. I think he would’ve ended up a world champion in few years if he stayed in WRC.

    4. Obviously, I’m a big fan of his. He was a great ‘kid in a Sauber’, a thoroughly enjoyable adversary to Schumacher the Champion and the rising Alonso (damn that unreliable McLaren!), beautifully snatched the title from the McLaren duo (racing well against Alonso the Champion and Hamilton the wonder rookie), did a half-assed of job being 2nd driver for Massa, then quit for a while (I guess playing 2nd to Massa does make you wonder if you have enough speed). Even his comeback with Lotus was entertaining, if not particularly brilliant or skillful (or helpful to the team, as was Schumacher’s probably). Sure, he got trashed by Alonso and is not faring well against Vettel, but I do believe there’s a chance that he spends his final 1.5 years in F1 fighting for wins. And if Vettel is not wearing red next year, he could actually find motivation to put his enormous talent to good use and fight for the championship (at least for a while longer than he has in recent years).

    5. Replace “racing” with “money”. Not that there’s something wrong with it.

      1. Or maybe “racing AND money” @pepe?

      2. Really? You know that how? If money was interesting to him he wouldn’t have got away the first time in 2010. He’s got so many from the stuff from the lucrative first contract with Ferrari when he was the best paid driver in F1, that he doesn’t need the comparatively meager amounts he’s getting from Ferrari now. Try thinking more before posting.

    6. joe pineapples
      24th August 2017, 18:55

      In it to drive behind a slower crippled sister car?

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