Kimi Raikkonen to return to F1 with Renault in 2012

2012 F1 season

Kimi Raikkonen, Renault, 2011

Kimi Raikkonen, Renault, 2011

Kimi Raikkonen will return to Formula 1 in 2012 with Renault.

The team, which is set to become Lotus, announced on Tuesday the 2007 world champion would join them for next season.

Raikkonen, who last raced in Formula 1 with Ferrari in 2009, signed a two-year deal with the team.

Raikkonen said: “I?m delighted to be coming back to Formula 1 after a two-year break, and I?m grateful to Lotus Renault GP for offering me this opportunity.

“My time in the World Rally Championship has been a useful stage in my career as a driver, but I can?t deny the fact that my hunger for F1 has recently become overwhelming.

“It was an easy choice to return with Lotus Renault GP as I have been impressed by the scope of the team?s ambition. Now I?m looking forward to playing an important role in pushing the team to the very front of the grid.??

Gerard Lopez, chairman of teams owners Genii, said: “All year long, we kept saying that our team was at the start of a brand new cycle. Backstage we?ve been working hard to build the foundations of a successful structure and to ensure that we would soon be able to fight at the highest level.

“Kimi?s decision to come back to Formula 1 with us is the first step of several announcements which should turn us into an even more serious contender in the future. Of course, we are all looking forward to working with a world champion. On behalf of our staff, I?d like to welcome Kimi to Enstone, a setting that has always been known for its human approach to Formula 1.”

Raikkonen’s return means a record six world champions will compete alongside each other. He joins Sebastian Vettel, Jenson Button, Lewis Hamilton, Fernando Alonso and Michael Schumacher.

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376 comments on Kimi Raikkonen to return to F1 with Renault in 2012

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  1. Himmat said on 30th November 2011, 8:49

    Wow. The Malaysian NST paper had the headline running in the sports section as ‘Raikkonen returns to F1 with Lotus’.

    I actually thought Lotus as in team Lotus. But then after reading the first couple of sentences, it said “He will be joining the team formerly known as Renault”.

    Dang….

  2. mr_score (@mr_score) said on 30th November 2011, 9:05

    Wow! What a buzz this comeback is creating! For the cool ice man who’s not showing that much emotion, he’s really stirring up some. Hope he’s a bit mad for getting sacked from Ferrari and that Lotus Renault is able to get him a decent car to at least fight with Ferrari. Then I can promise you we’re up for a treat! The Finns might be a bit quiet and not all that well spoken, but the fire will be there!

  3. Steve Jones (@stevejones599) said on 30th November 2011, 14:02

    Awesome, f1 hasn’t been the same since Raikkonen left, cant wait for him to return, will he b able to adapt and fit in better than Schumacher? what will he achieve at Renault? cant wait to find out, anyone else agree?

  4. vho (@) said on 1st December 2011, 0:47

    Wow, 6 WDCs in 2012. All we need now is Mika, Jacques, Damon, Alain to come out of retirement to have 10 WDCs. Heck why not get Nige, Nelson, and Keke out of retirement too…

  5. Shane (@f1champion18) said on 1st December 2011, 4:24

    It will be interesting to see how committed Raikkonen is to Renault/Lotus. Obviously, he is a very talented driver, but his committment has often been questioned in the past. I think Reanult will have to produce a competitive car from the start to keep him happy. Another thing that will be interesting will be who his partner will be. I have a feeling we may see Romain Grosjean back in F1 next year. 2012 looks like it will be an interesting season.

  6. McG (@mcg) said on 2nd December 2011, 0:15

    Brilliant! I love to watch Kimi drive. Renault/Lotus/whatever, are a great team who can do well in 2012. I suppose that can be said for nearly every team at this point though :p

    Good to see him back though.

  7. NebulaF1ghter (@nebulaf1ghter) said on 2nd December 2011, 17:17

    What a funny guy. Great to have him back.
    http://www.f1zone.net/news/the-words-and-wisdom-of-kimi/10648/

    Enjoy!

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