Rumours continue to grow that Kimi Raikkonen is poised to make an F1 return with Williams in 2012.
The former world champion has lacked commitment to his rallying campaign this year.
Can he rediscover his form and return to his best with a comeback to Formula 1?
It’s not hard to see the attraction of an F1 return for Raikkonen. The 32-year-old has won 18 races and a world championship already.
As Michael Schumacher has shown, he could have a decade or more of racing ahead of him.
The prospect of having six world champions on the grid – something which has never been seen before – would be a marvellous boost for the sport.
And it could help rejuvenate Williams, one of F1’s most successful teams, who have endured their worst season ever this year. With a new engine deal in place and several key changes in their technical staff, the arrival of a former champion could mark the beginning of a turnaround for the team.
Given the manner in which Raikkonen left F1 at the end of 2009, and his patchy career since then, you have you question whether his heart is still in it.
In the space of two years Raikkonen went from winning the world championship to being dropped by Ferrari with a year left on his contract.
Having failed to get a full-time seat in the World Rally Championship for his second season, Raikkonen has pulled out of rallies at the slightest provocation.
He did not appear at the Australian event, not wanting to make the long journey, earning himself exclusion from the championship standings. That does not bode well as the 2012 F1 calendar is larger and has more far-flung venues than the WRC’s.
It is unlikely a comeback would be met with instant success. Williams have had a dreadful season this year with many retirements.
F1 should have the best drivers and therefore of course I would like to see Raikkonen back.
Both driver and team are faded former champions and many of their fans would like to see them competing at the front again.
But Raikkonen must be realistic about what an F1 comeback with Williams is likely to involve. If he can’t face getting on a plane to Australia, grinding through a few hundred interviews and then retiring from the race on the first lap because his KERS has packed up, then he should sit tight.
Do you think Kimi Raikkonen should return to F1 with Williams? Would he be successful? Cast your vote below and have your say in the comments.
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