Raikkonen: Leaving Ferrari was a relief

Kimi Raikkonen celebrates with Ferrari after winning the 2007 world title in Btazil

Kimi Raikkonen celebrates with Ferrari after winning the 2007 world title in Btazil

Nov.8 (GMM) Kimi Raikkonen has admitted that it was a relief when his lucrative deal with Ferrari ended in 2009, despite winning the F1 World Championship with the team in his first year with the Maranello racers, in 2007.

Kimi RaikkonenThe premature termination of the Finn’s contract, making room for the arrival of Fernando Alonso and major sponsor Santander, pushed Raikkonen out of F1 completely and off to a two-year foray in world rallying and NASCAR.

But the now 33-year-old returned to the grid this year with Lotus, performing impressively, to sit a comfortable third in the drivers’ standings, and having notched up his 19th career grand prix last weekend in Abu Dhabi.

He is also signed up for 2013.

Asked by the Spanish sports newspaper Marca to recall his memories of racing for F1’s most famous team Ferrari, Raikkonen answered: “Neither good nor bad. I won a title with them and had some good times. I am satisfied with the three years I spent there.

Kimi Raikkonen Luca di Montezemolo Ferrari 2007“I don’t miss anyone. To me, leaving there was a relief. The situation could have been better, but it’s the past and what is done cannot be reversed,” said Raikkonen.

“Things don’t last long if you’re working somewhere and the relations are not good.”

He explained that, in contrast, he enjoys working with Lotus.

“I felt good from the start,” said Raikkonen. “People work hard and calmly, but they want to win and the sport and the technical sides come before the politics.”

Subbed by AJN.

  • Kimi4WDC

    I guess everyone got what they wanted due to this reshuffle. Oh wait, no, Ferrari still didn’t get the title with all the money in the bank, unless it’s they money they were after, they won!

  • Stoner

    Kimi should be at Mclaren or RedBull . He really needs a fast car. If he gets a fast car then no one can stop him.

  • hillside

    with that amount of money Kimi took when he left, it really is a big RELIEF!!

  • F1 Neutral

    I never understand why people think that it’s Ferrari’s usual position to be towards the front of the grid.
    They were nowhere when the Schumacher team of Brawn/Stepney/Todt and especially Rory Byrne joined forces to produce the unbeatable spell of the early 90’s.

    Kimi and Massa were lucky to inherit some of the remaining DNA from the Rory Byrne era, but the rule changes of 2009 meant a completely new style of car, a car that has been a little more competitive than the pre-Schumacher Ferraris, but still about the 4th fastest team on the grid.

    I’m glad that Kimi won in 2007 – he always deserved the world title at some point, having come so close before.

  • F1 Neutral

    Grr sorry … meant “early 00’s” !

  • You are joking right?

    @F1 Neutral

    Don’t you mean until Ferrari, Schumacher and company getting those exotic two seconds a lap faster Bridgestone tires that no other team was allowed to have?

  • jl

    @ joking
    Haha,… if the tyre case true than no wonder. Schumacher is the greatest in term team building.
    I remember that he never blamed Brigdestone when they inferior against Michelin. Bridgestone felt they are part of Schumacher team even other top team as Mclaren have longer relationship than Ferarri.
    But I think it’s still on the line of rules when FIA never make any case on it. FIA not stupid to “not find” anything suspicious on the tyres. Even they punish Schumacher for “park on Monaco qualy”

  • kimster

    i though lotus will give you all that you want, as long they capable. they make you as number 1 driver

  • Forza Ferrari

    Ungrateful little backstabber. My opinion of him gets lower and lower every time he says something derogatory about Ferrari. He’s a tattletale. Doesn’t he know the saying: “What happens on the battlefield stays on the battlefield.”? That was pathetic from Kimi. I hope he never wins a race again.

  • Gran Turismo

    @ Forza Ferrari

    Raikkonen is just being honest. What is wrong with that?

  • K-15-

    Ferrari does not deserve Kimi simply because he is a racer with raw speed who puts racing above all and don’t indulge in politics, big banks’ diners, lobbying and will never ever play second fiddle to anyone.

  • kaka007

    @Forza Ferrari
    Kimi was just being honest.. I find nothing wrong in his comments.. Even if you say ferrari is non-political a 100 times, it won’t make them non-political.. Take it and move on.. Ferrari are a very good team but not always a straight forward team with those pathetic luca di montezemolo n stefano on board

  • Butterfly

    Why did Ferrari treat Kimi badly? Surely, it wasn’t his driving.

  • psych4191

    @Butterfly

    Probably because he wanted to drive, not say hello to sponsors and do bullshit at parties.

  • extremis47

    Kimi will be the last ferrari world champion!

  • Butterfly

    @extremis47:

    I hope you’re wrong, but judging by the last four cars, you may be right.