Kimi Raikkonen, GP3, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013

Ferrari officially announce Raikkonen to rejoin team in 2014

2014 F1 seasonPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

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”

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  1. 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?

  2. 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

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

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

  5. Ooh can it be 2014 already!

    Let’s just give current WDC title to Vettel this weekend and start 2014 early… :D
    It’ll save us the boring next couple of races.

  6. I see people saying Ferrari are a lock to take the WCC next year, but it all depends on the car. If you take Alonso’s and Kimi’s points from 2013 so far and add them together, it totals 303 points. That’s more than they have with Massa, which is 248 points. But Red Bull have 352 points.

    Kimi will provide an upgrade compared to Massa but the difference won’t be colossal. Of course it remains to be seen whether Ricciardo will equal Webber.

    1. That’s true, but maybe it would have been different if Kimi was driving the Ferrari car and not Lotus.
      That said, combining their points from the last year, Fernando and Kimi would win WCC for Ferrari with comfortable 25 points advantage over Vettel-Webber combo.

      1. As you said @jonsan it all depends on the car, and it will have nothing to do with this year’s or last year’s points. I think the ‘upgrade’ compared to FM could well be colossal. There’s no reason to think otherwise, as this is now a new dynamic, a new look team, in a new look format for F1. Hopefully both drivers will push each other to new unseen levels. Let’s start by seeing how well all the drivers like their new cars and who has it within their car’s ability to tweek it to their liking if at all possible, and run with it, or flounder with problems needing deeper attention, dealing with the newness of the technical regs.

        From the vantage point we have right now, based just on driver pairings, and the likely best engine/chassis marriages, there’s no reason to exclude the ‘lock’ on the WCC from RBR and Mercedes and just hand it solely to Ferrari.

  7. I will honestly say my heart is breaking for Lotus but for me Kimi will always come first. Where he goes I follow. My concern is how well the prancing horse can manage 2 of the best stallions in the field.
    Now I can gloat that I predicted Kimi to Ferrari the 1st week in April.

  8. Hells bells. This has the makings of a classic partnership, and if the Ferrari is good, a classic season.

  9. Now, Kimi has a contract with Ferrari until 2015. Vettel and Hamilton have contracts until 2015 as well. I am assuming Kimi won’t stay any longer than that, and in that case Ferrari will have the chance to choose between one of the 2007 debutant greats that are Seb and Lewis, after one of the 2001 debutant greats gets off, and a year after Alonso’s contract runs off, they could have the other one as well – would be fun to see them as teammates from 2017, and one of them alongside Fernando in 2016.

  10. Well, there go Ferrari’s chances.

    They are a team that thrive on stability. And now, on the eve of some of the most dramatic and comprehensive changes to the technical regulations, they have taken a driver on a short-term contract, a driver who threatens the established order within the team. It is a decision that makes no sense to me, and one that I suspect history will remember as one of the worst a team has made.

    Ferrari should have taken Hulkenberg.

    1. You may be right, but I just wonder if Ferrari themselves would define their state in recent years as ‘thriving.’ Personally I’m all for an upsetting of the established order if it means we get to see two gladiators on a top team.

      1. @robbie – Ferrari’s problem isn’t that their drivers needed replacing. Massa has been under-performing for a while now, but the real issue is their car development. They haven’t been able to keep up with everyone else as the season goes on. Replacing Massa isn’t going to fix that, because Alonso already has that rare ability to drive a car beyond its limits (a skill I have reason to believe Raikkonen lacks, given his performances over the last two years), and even he can’t get anywhere with it.

        1. because Alonso already has that rare ability to drive a car beyond its limits

          He doesn’t. But I agree with the rest though. Replacing Massa, while understandable, is not going to solve the problem. The car is and always will be the determining factor in F1. Alonso (or Raikkonen) isn’t going to become World Champion in a car that’s only 2nd fastest at best.

          1. And the point is at this point we cannot say that next year’s Ferrari is only 2nd fastest at best. As far as I know they won’t be driving this year’s car next year. The car may be the determining factor always, but you guys are making it sound like the driver pairing, and the combined drivers input has nothing to do with it, almost like it totally doesn’t matter who is behind the wheel or under what circumstances.

            I think the driver matters a great deal always (or else F1 is on the wrong path), and especially if it is one who is NOT in a designated role to play subservient, the motivation level can be entirely different than for FM whose efforts, he would always be aware of, would only go to help FA at Ferrari not himself. KR will be highly motivated to not be seen as replacing FM and his role at Ferrari, and FA should be highly motivated now that he cannot expect his teammate to R&D for him. I’d like to think they will still both work together, but with both drivers having true equal status it should all have a totally different flavour on the team and I think it should only be healthy for them, and certainly much better for us the paying audience.

        2. @prisoner-monkeys I entertain the notion that a driver change, with hopefully not an underperfoming KR but an invigorated one, will help push everything and everyone to new levels below which perhaps they have stagnated for too long. Let’s see if next year’s car needs driving beyond it’s limits, or just who does how well with each others ‘most dramatic and comprehensive changes to the technical regulations.’ Such are the changes that it is, I’m sure, Ferrari’s hope and expectation that it will be out with the old and in with the new starting next Jan/Feb. For now it’s simply way too early to know. They have to nail the car or it just might be more of the same for them, but I hope for more than that from a new look F1 and Ferrari.

  11. Only needs 3 words: Bring it on!!!

  12. Cant wait for 2014 Alonso and Kimi in the same team its a dream. I’m gonna have to change my avatar. Forza Ferrari

  13. “…travelling companion…” ? Awesome!

    I can’t wait until the post qualifying or post race interviews where Alonso is asked why he is behind Kimi: “Well, my car was a little tricky today but my travelling companion…he had a good car today.”

  14. Maybe we will see Massa in Sauber. I believe Hulk should be roped in by Lotus.

  15. Michael Brown (@)
    11th September 2013, 18:34

    Alonso and Räikkönen can really push this team forward.

  16. Happy news. Congratulations to Raikkonen, and a very big thank you for your loyal support to Massa (even though it was high time to finish his career at Ferrari)

  17. My only question is how soon into next season will Fernando or Kimi try to run each other off the track?

    1. I thing by the Barcelona GP

  18. Ferrari´s budget for its drivers 2014 would save the life of Lotus! What a cruel world.
    Yes I would like to see Hulk and Gro chasing Vet, Alo, Rai, Ham and Ros, but first Lotus has got to do its homework done.

  19. A real stupid thing to do from ferrari, of course they have the most interesting line up for 2014 but to have tow great pilots in the same team in particular ferrari (we all now they have team orders) will a total disaster for them, by the Barcelona GP they will fight I’m secure.

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