Ferrari officially announce Raikkonen to rejoin team in 2014

2014 F1 season

Kimi Raikkonen, GP3, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Kimi Raikkonen will return to Ferrari next season, five years after he was dropped by the team.

Ferrari confirmed the news on Wednesday, the day after Felipe Massa announced his eight-year tenure at at the team was coming to an end.

Raikkonen has signed a two-year deal to drive for the team who he last raced for between 2007 and 2009. A statement from from Ferrari confirmed he will “join Fernando Alonso in the driver line-up for the next two racing seasons”.

“I am really happy to be returning to Maranello where I previously spent three fantastic and very successful years,” said Raikkonen. “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.”

Ferrari scored their last championship success with the Raikkonen-Massa partnership in 2008 and Raikkonen is the team’s most recent drivers’ champion. He will partner Fernando Alonso, the driver who replaced him in 2010.

Raikkonen and Alonso were championship rivals in 2005 while racing for McLaren and Renault respectively. They won seven races each that year but Alonso won the title with two rounds to spare.
It brings an end Raikkonen’s association with Lotus, with which he returned to Formula One last year following a two-year absence from the sport in the wake of his departure from Ferrari.
Alonso said: “I’d like to welcome my new travelling companion: together, starting next year, we will have to tackle a very demanding technical and racing challenge.”

“I want to thank Felipe for all the support he has given me and the team during this journey we have made together over all these years,” he added.

“Come the end of the season, it will not be easy to say goodbye to a team-mate like him. He has always been truly professional and loyal to the team and I am sure that right to the end, he will do his utmost for the Scuderia that he loves so much.”

Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali added: “I am pleased to welcome Kimi back to the Scuderia, the team with which he won his world championship title.”

“I sense he is very happy to be returning to Maranello and very determined to tackle the work that awaits him in the best way possible.”

Domenicali also added his thanks to Massa for his eight years of service as one of the team’s racing drivers: “I wish to thank Felipe with all my heart and also on behalf of all our fans around the world, for the extraordinary job he has done for the team over so many years.”

“Felipe has always behaved like a real team player. Together we have lived through some great times and also a few dramatic moments, which have helped to cement a truly unique relationship on both a professional and personal level.”

“He will always be part of our family and we wish him all the very best for the future. Now we must concentrate all our efforts on the remaining seven races of the season and we know that, as always, we can count on Felipe’s contribution, while we work together to reach our goals. Our determination will not waver one iota right to the very end.”

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206 comments on Ferrari officially announce Raikkonen to rejoin team in 2014

  1. Mclaren (@ahmej010gmail-com) said on 11th September 2013, 13:54

    Excelllent news, i respect Alonso massively as a driver but he’s had it easy since Hamilton beat him in 07. Its going to be crazy these two fighting it out in the same team, wow wow! As brundle said, if Kimi is ordered “Kimi, Fernando is faster than you”, kimi’s response would be “If he is faster than me, why is he behind me”. Massively exciting news!

  2. SK (@terminator) said on 11th September 2013, 13:54

    As a Mclaren fan, this news depresses me even more. Ferrari have Alonso and Raikonen, we have… Button and Perez :(

  3. He will partner Fernando Alonso, the driver who replaced him in 2010.

    On this regard, I think Ferrari would’ve wanted a Raikkonen-Alonso partnership already in 2010, but sacking Massa after his crash would have been cruel, also considering he beat Kimi in 2008 and they were both pretty equal in 2009. That was a tougher decision than it was today, where one driver is clearly the slowest of the two.

    • On this regard, I think Ferrari would’ve wanted a Raikkonen-Alonso partnership already in 2010

      I don’t think so @fixy.

      Remember, in 2007 Massa was only a couple of points behind. And in 2008 he clearly had Kimi beaten, as he had been doing until his accident in 2009. I think Ferrari felt a bit let down by Kimi at that point.

      • @bascb Good point, but they kept Massa for three seasons after 2010. And the 2009 Kimi was miles better than the 2010 Massa. Kimi won a race, scored several podiums and showed he was good, I’d say at the end of 2009 Ferrari got rid of Kimi not because of his performances but because the other option would have been deemed unfair. Either way they had little to lose (they thought) because Kimi and Felipe were closely matched. With Alonso, they were almost certain to win a title with a good car, but then Felipe proved slower than expected. In 2010, Alonso-Raikkonen or Alonso-Massa for Ferrari would have been pretty much the same, but perhaps they saw Felipe as a better prospect for the future and, definitely, as more likely to help Alonso. Also, Felipe was initially signed by Ferrari in 2001, so they had a long relationship whilst the “cold” Kimi would’ve left without too much fuss.

  4. GeorgeTuk (@georgetuk) said on 11th September 2013, 14:00

    Don’t think there will much in the way of fireworks or personality clashes, Alonso is a lot older and more mature now and the same for Raikkonen I would say, Ferrari have also seen how you can manage Raikkonen in a different way for better results.

    But it’s certainly an interesting choice, that car needs to be very very good otherwise the abuse will come from both sides of the garage!

  5. MazdaChris (@mazdachris) said on 11th September 2013, 14:01

    Brilliant news. With a driver line up this strong, Ferrari has a great chance of securing second place in the constructors’ championship next year…

  6. This should be interesting. I believe Alonso would have upper hands against Kimi even it would be very close. Also I think this is a great chance to confirm how post-2009 Massa is different from pre-2009

    • Exactly what I was thinking. Many people say something like “Raikkonen couldn’t even beat massa and Alonso beats him all the time”. What they don’t realize is, Massa basically won the championship in 2008. He was just as legitimate contender as Hamilton, Alonso and Raikkonen back then.

      But then the injury occurred and after he returned, he was nowhere near what he used to be.

      And I also believe Raikkonen is a better driver now, compared to 2009. I think spending some time in rallying (where mistakes are much more costly than in F1) really helped him become a more complete driver.

      • MazdaChris (@mazdachris) said on 11th September 2013, 14:25

        I see this said lots of times, that Massa’s accident affected him and he wasn’t able to get good results since. But I don’t believe this is actually the case. In the first few races back, he scored multiple podiums and put in plenty of very decent drives, moving consistently up the order from his starting position. As the year went on his results started to slip, and he fell into a slump from which he hasn’t really recovered. The point being that you can’t blame the accident for his poor form, even if I think most would agree he’s no longer the driver he used to be.

        My take on it is more that Alonso has managed to systematically marginalise Massa inside the team through his relentless pace and methodical approach. The accident didn’t destroy Massa – Alonso did.

        • Yes, the accident might not have been the whole reason for Massa’s bad results, but my point was that you can’t really compare Alonso and Raikkonen based on their results against Massa. I often see people do that.

          Don’t know if you understand what I mean (my English isn’t the best).

  7. I doubt Alonso and Kimi will be doing the travelling together on many occasions.

  8. You have to admit, Eddie Jordan really has been on fire these last few years!
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/formula1/23761323

  9. Swindle94 (@swindle94) said on 11th September 2013, 14:16

    The ultimate case of Ferrari saying “yeah… Sorry kimi. We screwed up a few years ago.”

  10. Jan (@yancheelaa) said on 11th September 2013, 14:18

    YES YES YES YES… happy for KIMI

  11. good for ferrari and kimi! he will undoubtedly fight for a lot of race wins next year!

    what about lotus’ driver line-up? grosjean & hulkenberg? or will they give valsecchi a chance?

  12. Can`t see Kimi or Alonso moving aside to let the other through so should be very interesting… I just hope for once, Ferrari will listen to race fans and actually let these 2 race each other

  13. craig-o (@craig-o) said on 11th September 2013, 15:02

    I’ll be supporting the driver, not the team. Absolutely hate this news. Only upside is Hulk could end up at Lotus…

  14. Wow, for the first time in years we will see the two Ferrari drivers actually racing each other. I’m looking forward to that.

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