Kimi Raikkonen at Singapore Grand Prix

Ferrari Rumor Confirmed – Raikkonen Out!

by F1Fan on September 30, 2009

Ferrari announced today that they have signed a three year contract with Fernando Alonso beginning next season, confirming the rumors that have been circulating around the Formula One paddock for the past couple of months.

Ferrari’s line up for 2010 will be Fenando Alonso, Felipe Massa and Giancorlo Fisichella as reserve leaving Kimi Raikkonen without a seat.

“Maranello, 30th September 2009 – Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro announces that it has reached an agreement with the driver Fernando Alonso. The agreement covers three racing seasons, starting in 2010.

The Scuderia’s driver line-up next season will therefore be made up of Felipe Massa and Fernando Alonso, with Giancarlo Fisichella in the role of reserve driver.”

“Kimi Raikkonen will leave the team at the end of this current season, after what has been a rewarding and fruitful partnership, which saw him win the Drivers’ title in 2007. He also played a key role in Ferrari’s taking of the Constructor’s title that same year and in 2008.”

In a prepared statement as part of the Ferari press release Kimi confiirmed the situation:

“With common consent, we have agreed to terminate the contract binding me to Ferrari to the end of 2010, one year ahead of schedule.

I am very sad to be leaving a team with which I have spent three fantastic years, during which time I won plenty of races. Together, we have won 50% of the world titles in that period and I managed to take the Drivers’ title in 2007, thus achieving the target I had set myself at the start of my career. I have always felt at home with everyone here and I will have many happy memories of my time with the team.”

So what will Kimi do now? Many F1 Pundits have questioned Raikkonens commitment to F1 and motivation this season, but while this may be an issue his talent inside the car is without question. His return to form since Massa’s accident, getting on the podium in 3 of the last four Races in the F60, which even Ferrari acknowledge is not the best performing car on track this season, is truly remarkable.

I for one hope that he continues to excel for the rest of the 2009 season, both Suzuka and Interlagos in Brazil are circuits that Raikkonen has won on in past seasons.

Next season who knows, there are a lot of teams that could use his talents if he wishes to stay in F1, whether or not they could afford him is another matter, reportedly if he had stayed with Ferrari the contract that was just mutually terminated was worth $49 Million dollars for 2010.

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