Kimi Raikkonen, Alfa Romeo, Suzuka. 2019

If F1 wants to go green “we should stay home and forget the racing” – Raikkonen

2019 Mexican Grand Prix

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Formula 1 can only go so far when it comes to promoting environmental messages, says Kimi Raikkonen.

Lewis Hamilton has become increasingly vocal on the subject in recent months. Today he revealed his desire to become “carbon neutral” by the end of the year, while other drivers echoed his concerns about the damage being done to the planet.

Although Raikkonen indicated he holds similar views, he believes F1 is not the best place to promote environmental messages.

“Obviously I think it involves everybody who lives on this planet,” he said. “In the end we all try to do what we can.

“But honestly we are probably not in the best place to start making big stories out of it, because in the end we’re burning fuel for what? To be first, second?

“I mean, for sure we try to do our part always if and when it’s possible. But I think F1 is in probably not the strongest place to tell people that this is what we should do, because to really go that route we should all stay home and forget the racing.”

Raikkonen stressed he does not believe people should not try to reduce their impact on the environment. “Like I said we all try to do our part,” he added, “but I think it’s a crazy subject in many ways to get into, especially on a race weekend.”

Sergio Perez, who is competing in his home race this weekend, backed Hamilton’s stance. “I think it’s very important that we raise our voices,” he said. “A lot of people hear us, especially someone like Lewis.

“It’s very important. I see the messages that he sends often on his social media are good. A lot of people are following him, so if we can impact the world, if we can help a bit, I think we are obliged to do so. I don’t see anything wrong with that.”

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
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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35 comments on “If F1 wants to go green “we should stay home and forget the racing” – Raikkonen”

  1. Thank god for Kimi Raikkonen, shining a light on the utter stupidity of the rest of F1.

    Put up or shut up Lewis, what do you want more, to save the planet, or to beat Schumachers records to cement yourself as the all time #1? You could save a lot of carbon emissions by retiring RIGHT NOW. Which of course you won’t do, because that doesn’t match your current narrative.

    SPARE ME! Go back to High school girl Snapchat filters and bad rapping.

    Liberty is turning Lewis into the shoe.

    1. Serious cringe reading your comment.

      1. So there’s something wrong with being a vegetarian and doing ones bit to make the world a better place?
        (Insert rolling eyes smiley)

        Kimi. “Obviously I think it involves everybody who lives on this planet,” he said. “In the end we all try to do what we can”.

        Amen, and there you have it.

        1. Indeed, @budchekov, Kimi is pretty much in agreement with Hamilton that we should all do what we can. He just mentions that F1 probably isn’t the best suited platform to bring that message to the world.

      2. It’s pretty vile isn’t it. More toxic than an F1 car

    2. Lewis can want to make the world a better place and still be a racing driver. Those two things don’t have to be mutually exclusive. But I guess in your little world, anyone who’s concerned about CO2 emissions shouldn’t drive a car or have electricity in their house, because they’re hypocrites for using any fossil fuels at all.

    3. Fully agree with you – all nice and well but Lewis carbon footprint is MANY times bigger than most of us. How many flights does he make per year – does he have solarpanels – does he drive an electric car – he lives in a far bigger house (more heating).

      For me it is a bit too much “look how good am I” while in reality he is polluting the world more than you & me.

    4. Had a rough day, huh?

      1. No he hasn’t had a rough day. He’s just tired of declarations that have no basis in truth or fact.
        Maybe Lewis should get himself another PR firm that might vet his ‘thoughts’ and give some advice about how to articulate.
        Look at Kimi. There’s a guy who’s able to articulate ideas. After he’s thought about them.

        1. Big surprise, Old man says old things

    5. Kimi is just asking for a little perspective.

    6. Lewis only talk about this green thing for CULT and being Politcailly Correct. WHile Kimi just being REAL

  2. The man doesn’t say much, but when he does, he is usually spot on.

    1. @jaymenon10 Hmm he doesn’t say much but in this case he’s spot on in saying we shouldn’t say much?
      Thing is, Hamilton has generated a huge amount of interest in the topic. Raikkonen? Tumbleweed.

      1. @david-br you call what’s happening lately “interest”? I only see flame. No one’s gonna change his or her opinion and each position is getting more and more polarized.

      2. what;s good is interest if no solution is provided? thats what you call “showing off” “looking for clout”. SUm up lewis and his fans too well.

  3. while kimi is stating the obvious, people like kimi amd lewis can influence and do influence many many more people than an average man can. world wide! so lewis is right to to share his thoughts desires etc. soo too is kimi. but atleast lewus is using his influence to make a positive difference. and not just saying im only 1 man. what can i do to change the world. really kimi??? what can you do???

    1. The huge difference is also the people they can influence. Most people are transparent to very rich ones, Hamilton is not. And Hamilton stopping to use his place has more effect than many of us going on a green frenzy. Every effort counts and especially from the ones who emit the most.

      I was first a bit sceptical if that was the good place for such position from Lewis. But the more I think about it, the more I am convinced of the opposite, that’s a very good place to raise awareness and can have a very big impact.

      1. I agree there @jeanrien. Doing what he is, being as successfull and visible as he is, and also having the fans and companies the sport has listening in could help a lot get the message over.

        Also, the highly focussed world of F1 with ultimately crazy focus on small details if they bring the win can do a lot of engineering to help make it easier to get there – see Williams using aero simulation to curb energy losses in cooling vitrines in supermarkets, or their hybrid division, McLaren helping streamline medicine production etc.

        To me that is what is core to F1 and real world relevance – it is an environment where some ideas can be put under stress and highly developed crazily fast. I am sure these hybrid engines also help the manufacturers get closer on their efficiency for road cars, but the things they are doing to train the crews, keep them fit in this crazy environment, finetune stuff like pit equipment, improve simulation software and transfer of data etc. All of those things help develop highly skilled engineering.

        Having a top level motivator like Hamilton to put that focus on pursuing a path towards getting carbon neutral can only be a positive for the world.

  4. I think that whilst Hamilton’s concerns are very well founded and directed, he would be better off explaining to people what he does as an individual to become carbon neutral and set that example, Kimi is right, whilst Lewis’ comments will inevitably bring attention to the subject, there will also be a core that will dismiss the points made because the platform of motor racing is currently wholly unsustainable. Its a bit like Marlboro releasing an anti-smoking campaign!!

    1. He already explained what he does.

  5. I’m no global warming nut, not by any means, but this is a silly comment.

    On the same logic we should go back to dirty, oily exhausts where drivers ended races looking like pandas with a higher mortality rate than we care to remember. it was certainly more thrilling, just as the Roman chariot races were more thrilling and deadly than those early F1 races.

    We are stewards of the earth’s resources, everyone of us, and having fun while looking for ways to use those resources as sparingly as we can is a responsibility we can’t shirk.

    Electric racing still relies on power stations burning gas or coal or using nuclear power (wind farms building costs more in carbon than they save) . The idea that electric power is ‘carbon neutral’ is demonstrably wrong. Being vegan is no more sustainable than eating self replacing meat which is what cows and sheep and chickens and so on are. But that is no excuse for being extravagant with either.

    Too much vegetation in a diet might produce as much methane from people as animals do at the moment (well perhaps). There is certainly a lot of hot air surrounding this debate. Mine is just a small contribution.

    Let’s enjoy the racing and applaud the engineers trying to use as little of the earth’s resources while doing it. High tech, low resource cost, great thrills, little fuel.

  6. why I am not surprised that raikkonen is the one advocating saying less?

    1. Kimi has never been the brightest knife in the toolbox…

      1. Lewis is no different from the dumb kid who advocate ” How dare you”, empty bottle make the loudest voice afterall.

  7. I’m no advocate of F1 on the environmentally friendly front, but it feels a bit hypocritical to go after the sport on that topic. Is F1 really the planet’s biggest problem? Aren’t USA and China’s industrial complexes the actual bad guys (along with many others). It’s easy to go after F1 and bend it’s arms on that topic because they need to keep their image clean.

    F1 will eventually go electric and that’s ok. The electric cars will surely one day be able to match the speed. As for those concerned about the sound, why not put a siren like they did on the Junkers planes in WWII to keep the cars badass.

    1. I don’t know what those plane sirens sound like, so in my head I’m just imagining f1 cars driving round with police sirens and foghorns and it’s … quite funny

      1. Wonder how much fuel Hamilton’s private jet burns.

    2. I do not think anyone is going after F1 in particular. F1 talks about its own impact on the environment, just like a lot of other sectors/industries do. F1 is the biggest problem for those directly involved with F1 – because the only thing we can impact is what we do. If Lewis or Kimi were asking French people to eat differently or the mobile phone industry reduce its emissions that would be plain stupid. They talk about themselves and F1 because that what they can change and influence.

      I agree with you about F1 going electric sooner than later. To me F1 is the pinacle of racing four-wheel vehicles on a track. I care little about the noise or the number of cylinders involved; for the noise I play rock music and for the cylinders I go to the off-license…

  8. Hamilton needs to wind his neck in. He owns a clothing brand (THE worst industry at wasting water and causing environmental issues) and f1. Come on! The guy needs a reality check.

  9. Anyone who bemoans or objects to anyone saying we need to preserve and look after the planet we live on needs their throat cut.

    Live on TV so we all know they’re dead.

  10. Sounds like Kimi, in his own way, is asking F1 to put “Going green” into perspective. How much fuel does the Pinnacle of racing, F1, actually burn. Lmao, F1s carbon footprint. The number is so miniscule, it’s laughable. Perspective is needed. How much more fuel would a V12 burn? Do we really need to even answer that question? God where has perspective gone. How about an F1 “Green” series. I know we have E series, at these point I’m just looking to pacify the Earth loving race fans that think it’s a great idea that F1 runs powerplants resembling lawn mower engines, albeit the most efficient lawn mower engines on the planet. Can’t we just agree that 5 billion people probably shouldn’t be driving a V12 to and from work, daily. Can’t we agree that it would be nice to once again hear the distinct sound of a V12 during an F1 weekend. Plz, a little perspective.

  11. Kimi, your nirvana fallacy is showing.

  12. F1 can and should be able to do much more.
    In catering, in flying schedule.
    Generators on the spot could be non-diesel, glycerine or battery-packs (chraged from the grid)

    The f1 Fuel could be a synthetic Fuel made by clean energy.
    Or sustainable made from ethanol.

    There is probably allot more of pebbles that F1 could turn around.

  13. ICE race drivers talking about reducing worldwide carbon emissions has the same relevance as bull fighters calling for more global animal rights.

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