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Could Raikkonen join Red Bull in 2014?

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This topic contains 29 replies, has 19 voices, and was last updated by Avatar of f1alex f1alex 1 year, 9 months ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 30 total)
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  • #132229
    Avatar of Girts
    Girts
    Participant

    The rumours about Vettel joining Ferrari seem to be getting stronger. If Vettel really goes to Ferrari in 2014, then Red Bull will be left with a serious problem, namely, they won’t have a leading driver as Alonso and Hamilton are under long-term contracts elsewhere, too.

    Of course, there are other very promising and / or strong drivers on the grid, who would be happy to join the Bulls, such as di Resta or Kovalainen. And it’s possible that RBR will consider Ricciardo or Vergne to be good enough for a RBR race seat as well. However, if they wanted to secure themselves with the best available driver already now, then, in my view, they should arguably sign Kimi Raikkonen for 2014. The sooner, the better.

    I guess all of us have already noticed the video of Raikkonen ‘signing’ a new contract and the news that should appear on Wednesday. For sure, it’s just a symbolic agreement that he ‘signs’ in the video, not a real one but still, as I understand, there is absolutely nothing to sign with Lotus as Kimi’s current agreement with them includes 2013 as well.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tEiw-7DQ9GY

    Red Bull already sponsored the team that Raikkonen drove for in the WRC and there were some rumours about RBR being interested in the Finn’s services already in 2011. They are clever people so I wouldn’t be very surprised if Raikkonen announced on Wednesday that he is about to join them in 2014. And, even if it is not announced then, then I still believe that the chance of seeing Iceman driving a Red Bull in 2014 is pretty high.

    What are your thoughts?

    #212743
    Avatar of katederby
    katederby
    Participant

    RBR may still have a lead driver in 2014 as Webber has not mentioned his retirement yet… so given that Vergne and Ricciardo will have had another full year in F1 by 2014, either one of them could well be ready to make the move to RBR. Raikkonen has been replacing Webber since 2008, if you believe the rumours!
    I should add I still don’t see Vettel leaving Red Bull in 2014.

    #212744
    Avatar of Ben Needham
    Ben Needham
    Participant

    I have to say, I don’t think that video has anything to do with him joining Red Bull – however…

    I agree that Raikkonen would be the strongest choice, should (as is likely) Vettel leave.

    Webber, in my opinion, though a nice guy and obviously talented, is not world class in the sense that Alonso, Vettel and Hamilton clearly are. I can’t see any obvious youngsters coming up that would fit the bill of ‘potential world class’ ala Vettel in 2008/2009. Ricciardo and Vergne are yet to show anything bordering on the spectacular, so Raikkonen sounds like a good replacement to me.

    #212745
    Avatar of Prisoner Monkeys
    Prisoner Monkeys
    Participant

    *sigh*

    Not this rubbish again.

    #212746
    Avatar of Hotbottoms
    Hotbottoms
    Participant

    Prisoner Monkeys:
    Why do you think it’s rubbish? I think it’s possible that Räikkönen joins Red Bull in 2014. However, I don’t think this announcement has anything to do with Räikkönen’s plans for 2014 season, especially if he’s leaving Lotus. It would be very odd to announce that kind of information before 2013 season has even begun.

    Last November, when there were rumours about Kimi joining Lotus, this is what you had to say:

    No, I don’t think it was harsh at all. Raikkonen might have a top driver when he left the sport, but he has no experiece with DRS, Pirelli or fuel-heavy cars. Just one of these rules would leave serious questions about a driver’s ability, but Riakkonen has to answer to all three. For some reason, people seem to think he can be compeittive from the get-go, but there is no way this is remotely possible.

    So maybe I’ll just add this ‘rubbish’-quote to the list as well.

    #212747
    Avatar of Prisoner Monkeys
    Prisoner Monkeys
    Participant

    Why do you think it’s rubbish?

    Because the first rumours were started by Raikkonen fanboys who seemed to think that Red Bull sponsoring him in the WRC in 2010 was foreshadowing a move to Red Bull Racing in 2011, and they refused to listen to even so much as acknowledge the idea that Red Bull backed him in 2010 because a former Formula One World Champion competing in the WRC would naturally get a lot of attention, and that sponsoring him would get them more coverage.

    Last November, when there were rumours about Kimi joining Lotus, this is what you had to say

    Okay, the fact that you’ve sifted through a year’s worth of content to find a comment I made to try and throw in my face a) does not prove me wrong in this instance, because it is unrelated to this discussion, and more importantly, b) it is extraordinarily creepy.

    #212748
    Avatar of Girts
    Girts
    Participant

    @hotbottoms I agree with you and I think that we should always reevaluate the situation as the circumstances change. Hiring Raikkonen might have made no sense until now but, if Vettel leaves RBR, it’s a completely different state of affairs.

    But I also noticed that the YouTube video description specifically refers to Kimi’s plans for 2013 so yeah, we’ll probably not get to know anything new as soon as on October 17.

    #212749
    Avatar of Antonio Nartea
    Antonio Nartea
    Participant

    I think it’s possible that Räikkönen joins Red Bull in 2014.

    I think Raikkonen will much prefer driving in the World Lawn-mowing Championship (if there is one) rather than driving for Red Bull and having to put up with the insane amount of PR work, sponsor activations and showing off that comes with the contract. Vettel and Webber’s performances on track are not the only reasons why they drive for Red Bull. It’s also because they are both charismatic, likeable guys that always show up for interviews and PR jobs and charity work and so on so forth with a large smile on their face. They fit a certain profile that Raikkonen will never ever be able to apply himself to. And Raikkonen is an entity that Red Bull can’t successfully front in order to gain the maximum marketing potential out of it. It’s a lose-lose situation.

    So yeah, the rumours are rubbish. I don’t think Raikkonen will leave Lotus anytime soon and when he does, he’ll probably leave the sport again and go rallying or get into snowmobiles or…I don’t know, do something fun…

    If Vettel does leave for Ferrari in 2014, then Red Bull are better off keeping Webber and promoting either Buemi, Ricciardo or Vergne as a second driver for one season and making a bid for Hamilton in 2015 when he finally gets fed up with Mercedes.

    #212750
    Avatar of Hotbottoms
    Hotbottoms
    Participant

    Because the first rumours were started by Raikkonen fanboys [...]

    So you think this rumour is rubbish only because it was initially (two years ago) made by ‘Räikkönen fanboys’, even though the original poster in this topic presented none of the arguments that ‘Räikkönen fanboys’ did?

    a) does not prove me wrong in this instance, because it is unrelated to this discussion

    Of course it doesn’t, but you’ve earlier stated that you don’t like Räikkönen or his fanboys. I’m only saying that your opinions on Räikkönen’s are a bit biased, as the quote about Räikkönen joining Lotus demonstrates.

    Okay, the fact that you’ve sifted through a year’s worth of content to find a comment I made to try and throw in my face [...] b) it is extraordinarily creepy

    Well, actually I didn’t ‘sift through a year’s worth of content’, but I often copy people’s strict opinions and forecasts from various internet forums and this particular statement of yours was on the list. It’s just funny to paste them when things go totally different. Call it creepy if you want. I originally posted it on Bahrain review, but I guess you didn’t notice it then.

    #212751
    Avatar of JerseyF1
    JerseyF1
    Participant

    @tony031r I disagree with your assessment that Räikkönen doesn’t fit the Red Bull profile. A driver who also races snowmobiles and powerboats and likes snowboarding sounds exactly like a Red Bull profile to me when you look at all of the things Red Bull typically sponsors.

    I think that if Vettel is already signed up to leave then as @girts says RBR might be best to move towards this soon before that option is closed, unless they are confident that Ricciardo is going to be the new Seb.

    #212752
    Avatar of Hotbottoms
    Hotbottoms
    Participant

    @tony031r
    Those are very good arguments. But then again, Räikkönen has said many times that he doesn’t want to race in a team that doesn’t have a car that is capable of winning. He even left F1 for two years, because potential teams such as Renault or Williams weren’t competitive enough. I guess he realised that no top team would hire him after two years break, so he chose to go to Lotus even though he didn’t think they would be as competitive as they have been.

    So I think Räikkönen’s plan was to join Lotus for one or two seasons and then move on to a better team. Even though Lotus was good enough to fight for occasional victories on the first half of this season, their car is now only the 4th best and I predict that next season they are going to be solid midfielders. Therefore I think Räikkönen could do some more PR work in 2014, if a top team is willing to hire him.

    Also, Red Bull wants to keep winning races and championships in order to maximize publicity. If Vettel goes to Ferrari, Alonso stays there and Hamilton is at Mercedes, Räikkönen would be the next best choice. Even though Räikkönen doesn’t like PR work, he has a huge marketing value due to his character and the fact that he is a champion.

    So I think Red Bull and Räikkönen could reach a compromise and sign a deal for 2014. I’m not saying it’s going to happen, but I think it’s quite possible.

    #212753
    Avatar of Antonio Nartea
    Antonio Nartea
    Participant

    A driver who also races snowmobiles and powerboats and likes snowboarding sounds exactly like a Red Bull profile to me when you look at all of the things Red Bull typically sponsors.

    @jerseyf1 – At a first glance, it’s the perfect fit, I agree. But I think Red Bull’s motorsport effort is a bit different than their other extreme sports implications and is adressed to a slightly different segment in terms of target and reach. It’s their “high-end division”, let’s call it that, and it works based on a slightly different marketing strategy and attitude for and from those involved.

    F1 is not niche exposure. It’s large scale, full on exposure. Their main focus here is somewhat common to what they achieved yesterday with Baumgartner – creating modern heroes. People that will be associated with their brand long-term and will leave a long lasting mark on specific domains. Why do you think Red Bull signed Vettel in the first place? Why do you think they kept Webber since their early days in 2007? Why do you think they have one of the strongest and best-financed Young Driver Development Programmes in motorsport, even thought at the moment it doesn’t seem to produce the expected results? It’s in order to create personalities that are able to perform at the highest level, become marketing icons and bear a big Red Bull stamp on their backs while doing so. This is a formula that is working brilliantly for them, ergo, I doubt they will take the time, patience and resources to try and shape Raikkonen into what they need for their advertising strategy to work OR change their strategy in order to fit Raikkonen’s rebellious character.

    Long hair, streetwear and f-all attitude might not be enough when it comes to Red Bull’s motorsport division, since they already have the teenage, 18 to 25 segment covered successfully in pretty much any other form of urban / extreme sport there is. IMHO.

    But yeah, I’m not saying 100% sure it won’t happen either. It’s F1. Everything is possible as I witnessed much weirder things happen over the course of the years. I’m just saying, in my opinion, it’s a long to VERY long shot.

    But then again, Räikkönen has said many times that he doesn’t want to race in a team that doesn’t have a car that is capable of winning.

    @hotbottoms – I’m sure I will attract a lot of criticism for this remark but…the E20 was capable of winning up to the mid-season. The problem was Raikkonen didn’t manage to come to terms with his race engineer and mechanics over what the perfect setup for that car is. He struggled for a number of races with the steering not being to his liking, not being able to fully understand the tyres and so on, while Ferrari, McLaren and Red Bull progressed. And he’s still struggling in quali. Look at how many times Grosjean beat him this year. There’s a good chance a more flexible driver, like Alonso or Hamilton would have gotten at least one win out of that car. Just saying…

    And no, I don’t have anything against Raikkonen. I actually kinda like the guy.

    #212754
    Avatar of DavidS
    DavidS
    Participant

    Oh great, another “{insert favourite driver} rumoured to join {insert fastest team} in [one year/two years]” thread.

    #212755
    Avatar of AdrianMorse
    AdrianMorse
    Participant

    Slightly off-topic, but doesn’t anyone else find this whole whatwillkimidonext.com thing a bit silly and out-of-character for him? I thought he didn’t care for all the BS surrounding the sport and here he is announcing his endorsement to some brand of men’s perfume or whatever. If he does announce something interesting, like taking over Force India from Vijay Mallya, then I’ll gladly eat my words.

    As for RBR in 2014, first of all I think Vettel will stay, and if he doesn’t, then I suspect they will get someone younger, preferably from their own academy. The only problem for Red Bull is that they have been spoiled by Vettel, and by having the best car. I think there’s no reason to assume that Ricciardo and Vergne cannot do what Coulthard and Webber could and can do. It could even be that, when Red Bull needs new drivers, Ricciardo and Vergne get promoted at the same time, if there is nothing to choose between the two.

    #212756
    Avatar of Antonio Nartea
    Antonio Nartea
    Participant

    doesn’t anyone else find this whole whatwillkimidonext.com thing a bit silly

    It is plain stupid in my opinion. What’s the point in trying to create a whole lot of hype over signing a contract when that piece of paper is ALREADY signed? Everyone seems to forget he’s still under contract for 2013. He’ll most certainly announce he’s staying with Lotus, in which case the whole campaign will look dumb and purposeless or some new association with a sponsor, in which case the whole campaign will look dumb and purposeless or some big shock move like leaving the sport again for some other competition or joining Ferrari or Williams in which case WE will all look dumb and purposeless. However, there’s a bigger chance Karthikeyan will win the Indian GP than this.

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