Kimi R??ikk??nen vs Jackie Stewart

Champion of champions

Champion of Champions: Kimi R??ikk??nen vs Jackie Stewart

Kimi R??ikk??nen and Jackie Stewart’s F1 careers each lasted less than a decade. That’s not particularly long by the standards of today – consider that Rubens Barrichello is heading into his record-breaking 19th season.

But they both did a lot of winning in their nine-year stints in the top flight as the statistics below make clear.

An in addition to their championships both also finished as runner-up in two seasons. Stewart was second to Graham Hill in 1968 and Emerson Fittipaldi in 1972, his performance in the latter season dogged by a stomach ulcer.

R??ikk??nen was second to Michael Schumacher in 2003 and Fernando Alonso in 2005. In the latter year he was dogged by engine problems in his McLaren.

Arguably, both retired earlier than they might have done. Stewart decided early in 1973 it would be his last season, and he spurned big-money offers to come back.

R??ikk??nen was dropped by Ferrari at the end of 2009 and has not shown an interest in returning, happy instead to concentrate on rallying.

Which of these drivers should go through to the next round of the Champion of Champions? Vote for which you think was best below and explain who you voted for and why in the comments.

Kimi R??ikk??nen Jackie Stewart
Kimi R??ikk??nen, Ferrari, 2009 Jackie Stewart, Matra, 1969
Titles 2007 1969, 1971, 1973
Second in title year/s Lewis Hamilton Jacky Ickx, Ronnie Peterson, Emerson Fittipaldi
Teams Sauber, McLaren, Ferrari BRM, Matra, Tyrrell
Notable team mates David Coulthard, Juan Pablo Montoya, Felipe Massa Graham Hill, Johnny Servoz-Gavin, Francois Cevert
Starts 156 99
Wins 18 (11.54%) 27 (27.27%)
Poles 16 (10.26%) 17 (17.17%)
Modern points per start1 9.60 11.20
% car failures2 19.23 32.32
Modern points per finish3 11.89 16.55
Notes Signed by McLaren after a single season with Sauber Finished his first six races in the points and won his eighth start
Championship runner-up in third season and again in 2005 Runner-up to Graham Hill in 1968 before winning three titles in five years
Won title in first season for Ferrari after stunning late-season turn-around Retired on the eve of what would have been his 100th start after team mate Cevert was killed
Bio Kimi R??ikk??nen Jackie Stewart

1 How many points they scored in their career, adjusted to the 2010 points system, divided by the number of races they started
2 The percentage of races in which they were not classified due to a mechanical failure
3 How many points they scored in their career, adjusted to the 2010 points system, divided by the number of starts in which they did not suffer a race-ending mechanical failure

Round one

Which was the better world champion driver?

  • Kimi R??ikk??nen (24%)
  • Jackie Stewart (76%)

Total Voters: 685

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Read the F1 Fanatic Champion of Champions introduction for more information and remember to check back tomorrow for the next round.

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Images ?? Ferrari spa (R??ikk??nen), Ford.com (Stewart)

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117 comments on Kimi R??ikk??nen vs Jackie Stewart

  1. debaser91 said on 22nd January 2011, 21:50

    Fair enough Marco. Raikkonen is a bit of an strange driver, which is why people have such different opinions of him. Personally his whole outlook of purely focusing on the business of purely driving the car as quickly as possible rather than other details is what makes me a fan of him, whilst others don’t like him as they feel he is not committed or bothered. You’re right in that I can’t see him sticking around too long after a GP analysing the race :)

  2. Mr. T (@mr-t) said on 23rd January 2011, 1:03

    Kimi, for his ruthless and selfish pursuit of speed, money and fun.

  3. Ral (@ral) said on 23rd January 2011, 1:32

    Voted for Kimi, but like others, only because he can’t win this anyway and I am an admitted fan. But I don’t really think he should win this. Talent-wise, he might perhaps outclass Stewart and the man himself has been quoted as saying Kimi was the fastest on the track at one point during Kimi’s McLaren stint.

    But Stewart has been a much better ambassador for the sport, even after having retired and has done so much to push safety issues that, while Kimi probably bemoaned the resulting regulations, he was also “born into” as an F1 driver and therefore for the largest part must have taken for granted. And that’s not even going into the numbers, which very much favour Stewart.

  4. kowalsky said on 23rd January 2011, 7:18

    let’s remember two races they did in germany. jackie won at the old ring in 68, what everybody considered his best race. He kept the car in one piece in horrible weather conditions. On the other hand, people tend to blame mclaren for lack of reliability. But in 2005 when he was at the nurbugring in the las laps of the race being chased by alonso, he wasn’t smooth at all, when it was desperatly needed, and that finaly cost him the suspension failure.
    And now the kimi fans are going to get very upset, because like i said before, he is a cult driver for the fans that started watching f1 in the early 2000’s.
    He was fast and cool, but he didn’t used his talent to the maximun for lack of focus, steward on the other hand did.

    • debaser91 said on 23rd January 2011, 9:37

      To call Raikkonen a cult driver is maybe a bit harsh. When I think of recent drivers of that ilk someone like Takuma Sato fits the bill, or maybe Kobayashi at the moment. Someone who is fun to watch on the track but at the end of the day is not considered top draw.
      Raikkonen for all his flaws (and he has a few I admit) was one of the best performers of the last decade, although as I said earlier he is nowhere near a greater champion than Jackie Stewart.

  5. karasuma (@) said on 23rd January 2011, 8:44

    I voted for Kimi for one reason for me is The Best

  6. himmatsj (@himmatsj) said on 23rd January 2011, 9:35

    Raikkonen’s just awesome. Winning from 17th on the grid in Suzuka back in 2005 was just about the drive of the decade. Never liked him once he moved to Ferrari though.

    • Alex Bkk said on 23rd January 2011, 11:13

      Really? I thought that his drive to win the WDC was brilliant! That’s one of the high points of F1 in the last ten years… he did everything right in that race. Really unbelievable. I wonder what the Vegas odds were on Kimi winning the WDC?

      I still voted for Stewart…

  7. I would say Kimi is one of the most talented drivers in history. His natural speed is dumbfounding.
    His work ethic was not as good as it could have been. I think Jackie will win this one, but i vote for Kimi due to his pure speed, and in a sport of speed, this has to admired.

  8. Funkyf1 (@funkyf1) said on 25th January 2011, 7:58

    Stewart cant be denied, yet I’ll vote Kimi as he is my fab driver of the last decade

  9. Valentina said on 25th January 2011, 23:21

    Raikkonenn is my idol and best sportman ever so he is my choice!

  10. Valentina said on 25th January 2011, 23:22

    Raikkonen* is my idol and best sportman ever so he is my choice!

  11. Raikkonen_Biggest_Fan (@) said on 25th January 2011, 23:38

    Kimi is unique,fastest driver i think he bnever showed how hell of the champion he really is,he could do so much more than 1 title and we have never seen his real potentional if he comes back to f1 now i am sure he would win wdc,i am his enormous fan and i will always vote for him no mather what cause for me he is the best on this world!<3

  12. theRoswellite said on 27th January 2011, 16:02

    An unfair match-up for Kimi….and I’m sure if you ask him who should go forward he would undoubtedly make the correct choice.

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