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Sport Kimi Raikkonen: 'I never would have believed I would be in F1 at 40'

14:45  11 november  2019
14:45  11 november  2019 Source:   uk.sports.yahoo.com

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Kimi Raikkonen has argued he is back in the mood for F 1 by revealing he would have kept racing in 2010. " I was never planning to leave the sport It's still the same," the 32-year-old insists. Even now, he would prefer to split his F 1 racing with more rallying, but has agreed to abide his team's wishes that

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Kimi Raikkonen wearing a hat and sunglasses

In an era when Formula 1 is geared towards youth with its driver line-up, it is refreshing to see a mature Kimi Raikkonen lead the charge for the veterans within the sport.

Raikkonen has astounded himself by the fact he is still in F1 at the age of 40, the Finn celebrating his milestone birthday three weeks ago, at a time when half the grid is 25 or under.

It is astonishing to think McLaren's Lando Norris was just 15 months old when Raikkonen made his F1 debut in March 2001 at the Australian Grand Prix with Sauber, a team that at the start of this season morphed into the one he currently drives for, Alfa Romeo.

Eighteen and a half years on, Raikkonen is still a key figure at the heart of the sport's landscape, and with his enjoyment still as high as ever, the father of two shows no sign of slowing down.

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Kimi Raikkonen believes he has the speed to stay in Formula 1 , he’s now waiting on Ferrari to “choose whatever is best for” the team. According to reports, Ferrari are keen to retain their current line-up for a fourth consecutive season for 2018. It would be a divisive decision with some saying

Kimi Raikkonen has argued he is back in the mood for F 1 by revealing he would have kept racing in 2010. " I was never planning to leave the sport in the first place," the 2007 world champion told the Times of India. " I had a contract for 2010 anyway." Indeed, at the end of 2009, Ferrari bought out the

"I don't think I would have believed someone if they'd told me back then I would still be racing in F1 at the age of 40," Raikkonen said, speaking exclusively to Yahoo! Sport.

"Obviously, at that time, it was all about simply trying to drive well and stay in F1. Nothing was guaranteed.

"Yes, I had a contract in 2001 for three years - two plus one - but it was such early days that the aim was to try to do well and see what happens, but even when I was 27 or 28 I wouldn't have put any money on it.

Nick Heidfeld, Kimi Raikkonen are posing for a picture: German driver Nick Heidfeld, left, sits in the cockpit of the new Red Bull-Sauber-Petronas C20 Formula One racing car, while his Finnish colleague Kimi Raikkonen, right, looks on during the car's presentation in Hinwil, Switzerland, Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2001. The Swiss racing team unveiled its blue and white racing car, which is powered by a Ferrari engine and will have its first start during the season opener March 4 in Australia. (AP Photo/Steffen Schmidt, Keystone) © Provided by Oath Inc. German driver Nick Heidfeld, left, sits in the cockpit of the new Red Bull-Sauber-Petronas C20 Formula One racing car, while his Finnish colleague Kimi Raikkonen, right, looks on during the car's presentation in Hinwil, Switzerland, Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2001. The Swiss racing team unveiled its blue and white racing car, which is powered by a Ferrari engine and will have its first start during the season opener March 4 in Australia. (AP Photo/Steffen Schmidt, Keystone)

"Obviously, I left for a couple of years (in 2010 and '11), and if I hadn't have done that then I wouldn't be here today because I was pretty fed up, not with the racing, but with the politics and other nonsense."

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I 've seen things you people wouldn't believe . Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhäuser Gate. In his autobiography, Hauer said he merely cut the original scripted speech by several lines, adding only, "All those moments will be lost in time, like

Formula 1 is a world of glamour, passion and excitement. It's a world with a long history and a lot of stories. Many of them have good endings but there Formula 1 is also my big passion, I have watched this sport for more then 10 years. And as Ayrton Senna once said "you will never know the feeling of

Raikkonen has always been driven by his pure love for racing. The rest of F1 is anathema to him, including media interviews which he perhaps understatedly says he has "never been a big fan of".

At least an older, wiser Raikkonen appears more relaxed these days in an interview, compared to the Raikkonen of just a few years ago who was renowned for his mumbling, monosyllabic answers, part of his character that has made him a cult hero with many F1 fans.

Raikkonen has been grounded by his two children, Robin, 4, and Rianna, 2, who have provided him with a different perspective on life.

"It has changed things a lot," said Raikkonen with regard to being a dad. "If I were still on my own then life would obviously be very different.

"Kids change life a lot in many ways. Not all days are nice but that's how life goes. In many ways, it's much harder, but the purpose of life is a lot different.

"Of course, the racing takes up a lot of time, and in that way, it's a big part but it's only racing. It's never been the most important thing in my life."

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Kimi Raikkonen believes that Sauber have all the tools to improve again in 2019, and that they will make strong gains next year. Speaking about the car, the Flying Finn expressed his surprise at the Sauber, as he thought there would be a bigger gap between the Ferrari and the Sauber.

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Kimi Raikkonen et al. wearing costumes: Ferrari's Finnish driver Kimi Raikkonen (2ndR) holds his son Robin in his arms at the Circuit de Catalunya on March 10, 2017 in Montmelo on the outskirts of Barcelona on the fourth day of the second week of tests ahead of the Formula One Grand Prix season. / AFP PHOTO / LLUIS GENE    (Photo credit should read LLUIS GENE/AFP via Getty Images) © Provided by Oath Inc. Ferrari's Finnish driver Kimi Raikkonen (2ndR) holds his son Robin in his arms at the Circuit de Catalunya on March 10, 2017 in Montmelo on the outskirts of Barcelona on the fourth day of the second week of tests ahead of the Formula One Grand Prix season. / AFP PHOTO / LLUIS GENE (Photo credit should read LLUIS GENE/AFP via Getty Images)

Robin, in particular, has just started go-karting, which has Raikkonen, by his own admission, a little concerned.

"Having kids you obviously worry much more, which is not a nice thing but it comes normally," said Raikkonen.

"Like our son is doing go-karts here and there, and I see a lot of things, I know where the danger is. Kids don't think that way, they don't care, but automatically you start to worry.

"I know now why mum or dad said at times they were worried about me. You understand these things you have heard before when previously you wondered what they were worried about. Generally, you see things differently."

Away from the track, and aside from the focus on family, Raikkonen remains a fiercely private individual.

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Kimi Raikkonen had no thoughts about retirement after Ferrari announced they were replacing him at the end of the 2018 season, according to It was believed that the Finn, who has been in F 1 for 16 seasons including the current one, would announce his retirement when Ferrari decided to replace him.

( 40 ) If thou wouldest believe , thou shouldest see the glory of God. - -He takes her back to the promise which she had heard from the messengers ( John 11:4 Alphabetical: believe believed Did glory God her I if Jesus not of said say see tell that the Then to will would you. NT Gospels: John 11: 40 Jesus

In public, in the days in between the recent double-header in Mexico and the United States, Raikkonen visited an education project in Mexico City run by Save the Children, and followed that by launching his own clothing range, simply entitled KIMI, with West Coast Choppers.

While both events were naturally important to Raikkonen, he concedes that such charity work and business interests encompass but a fraction of the time he devotes to stuff that doesn't make headlines.

a group of young men playing a game of football: JUVENTUS STADIUM, TORINO, ITALY - 2017/05/30: Kimi Raikkonen, formula 1 driver of Scuderia Ferrari, during charity football game , la partita del cuore, between Nazionale Cantanti and Campioni per la ricerca. (Photo by Marco Canoniero/LightRocket via Getty Images) © Provided by Oath Inc. JUVENTUS STADIUM, TORINO, ITALY - 2017/05/30: Kimi Raikkonen, formula 1 driver of Scuderia Ferrari, during charity football game , la partita del cuore, between Nazionale Cantanti and Campioni per la ricerca. (Photo by Marco Canoniero/LightRocket via Getty Images)

"I do a lot of charity work but I never tell anybody," said Raikkonen.

"I'm not the type that does things to get my name in the newspapers. I'd rather say nothing and be in the background. I always try to keep it quiet. No-one needs to know because that's not the point of helping somebody.

"It's more about helping. I don't want anything out of it, or to make me feel better. I don't want people to know because that's not how it should be. You do it because you feel it's right."

It is the same philosophy when it comes to business. Raikkonen added: "My plans outside of racing have been going for years and years in the background.

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Kimi Raikkonen feels pulling off a one-stop strategy would have been "easy" had he not been “Obviously we never found out but I think we were in a decent position at that point but because of the Vettel claimed the changes had hurt Ferrari more than Mercedes, but Raikkonen believes it is

Steve Robertson, long-time manager of Kimi Raikkonen , has said retirement was never an option for the Finn who "just loves driving". “He has been with F 1 ’s iconic team for eight years, which is incredible. Now he may decide to end his career at the team where he started it.

"With the clothing, it's just something that came up. I had something some time ago but it was not working as I wanted.

"This one made a lot of sense. A fun thing to do. It's not about trying to sell as much as possible, and there's also a little charity involved.

Kimi Raikkonen that is cooking some food: Kimi Raikkonen launches clothing range © Provided by Oath Inc. Kimi Raikkonen launches clothing range

"The bigger picture for me is that if I do something it has to make a lot of sense and be fun."

For now, continuing in F1 still makes a lot of sense and is fun for Raikkonen, who has a contract with Alfa Romeo that takes in next year when he will turn 41.

Beyond that, when new regulations kick in that are intended to make racing closer and more appealing for all concerned, Raikkonen is unsure.

"It's still so far away," he says with typical ambiguity, a trait that has not deserted him when it comes to talking about his F1 future.

"Let's hope the new rules work, not just for the drivers but for everybody. It will be much better.

"As for me, I don't know. I never look much further than a year. We'll see."

Related: Lewis Hamilton's sixth Championship winning season in pictures [Read Sport]

a man standing in front of a crowd: Lewis Hamilton's sixth Championship winning season in pictures


Ferrari summon Vettel, Leclerc over crash .
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