Kimi Raikkonen will return to the Ferrari F1 team next year. After a four year break in which he drove in F1 for Lotus and also drove in the World Rally Championship, Raikkonen will again drive for the team with which he won the 2007 Formula One World Driver’s Championship.
In a statement to www.ferrari.com Raikkonen said “I am really happy to be returning to Maranello where I previously spent three fantastic and very successful years. I have so many memories of my time at Ferrari, memories which have stayed with me these past years, first and foremost, winning the World Championship title in 2007, which was really unforgettable. I can’t wait to be driving a Prancing Horse car again and to reacquaint myself with so many people with whom I had such close links, as well as working with Fernando, whom I consider a great driver, in order to bring the team the success it deserves.” Clearly Raikkonen is pleased to be with one of the best F1 teams in the world and has a positive attitude with regard to his teammate, Fernando Alonso, also a Formula One Champion. Anyone who has recently watched “Senna” will understand why two roosters in the hen-souse is often not the ideal scenario.
Raikkonen, the 34 (almost) year old Finnish driver, is one of very few who have left Formula One, competed in closed wheel racers, and then been welcomed back into a premier position on a winning team. In addition to driving a rally car at the pinnacle of that sport he was part of the Kyle Busch team in a brief NASCAR experience. Among his other accomplishments is having been the highest paid athlete in motorsports in 2007. Having raced for McLaren Mercedes, Lotus, and Ferrari his Formula One racing resume is now as solid as it can be.
The space for Raikkonen at Ferrari will be made by the departure of Felipe Massa.