Kimi Raikkonen came to Barcelona in the afternoon and had a long meeting about the test schedule with his race engineer Mark Slade, who started in the team at the beginning of March. Slade worked with Räikkönen last time in McLaren in 2006. Finnish driver is in the next Wednesday in popular British Top Gear tv show and tries to break Sebastian Vettel’s top time at airport of Dunsfieldin. BBC broadcasts the program a week later on Sunday. Grosjean has a Japanese race engineer Ayao Komatsu, and he joked that radio traffic certainly sounds amusing when a French and a Japanese are having a conversation. “We’ll try to give Kimi and his engineers all the feedback what we can. Kimi will be trying different things, so that we can get the car into top shape in Melbourne”, Grosjean explained.
KIMI Raikkonen expects to pick up right where he left off when he returns to Formula One, despite two seasons away from the sport.
The Finnish driver won the 2007 championship title when driving for Ferrari but quit in 2009 and switched to rally. He will return to F1 this year with the Lotus Renault team at the Melbourne Grand Prix and will be one of six former champions competing in the second race of the season. Michael Schumacher, Sebastian Vettel, Fernando Alonso, Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton will also hit the track on March 18. “I can’t deny the fact that my hunger for F1 has recently become overwhelming,” Raikkonen said. “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.” Raikkonen won the Melbourne GP in 2007.
Kimi Raikkonen has vowed that Lotus will not get despondent if they don’t make a positive start to the season.
The Enstone squad made a big impact at the beginning of the 2011 campaign when they claimed two podium finishes, but they went through a major slump mid-season and eventually finished a distant fifth in the Constructors’ Championship. A lot is expected from Lotus this season after they recruited former World Champion Raikkonen as one of their drivers, and made a positive start to the Jerez test. However, their pre-season plans took a big blow at the second test in Barcelona last week when they were forced to pull out on day one after they discovered a problem with their chassis.
Raikkonen, though, says the team won’t get discourage if they things don’t go according to plan early in the season. “The last year I was with Ferrari we weren’t always at the front,” he told F1 Racing in an interview. “But they [Lotus] started well last year. We hope the new car will be strong but the rules are slightly different and you never know. “But let’s say we’re eighth or something; we won’t say ‘Oh fuck we’ll give up’. We’ll always try to improve and hopefully we’ll be as high up as we can be.”
Kimi Räikkönen’s new tattoo on his right wrist was soon put to huge proportions by the F1-media.
They believed that Ferrari’s team principal Jean Todt was strictly against the tattoo his driver took. Yet Todt was immediately on Räikkönen’s side. Kimi didn’t need any permission for the tattoo. “I read about it. We had dinner on Thursday and since it wasn’t mentioned I didn’t even notice the whole thing. What is the most important for me is that the people here in this team are happy. If Kimi would be happy with a tattoo on his face and would ask for my opinion I would advise him to put it in some place that is less visible because otherwise he might get some problems of it later. There is so much talk – with a smile and without a smile – but what is important is that everyone is concentrated on doing his job. With or without a tattoo. I don’t care. If a sponsor would complain about the tattoo I would rather change the sponsor just to keep Kimi happy”, Todt assured. “He has been planning on taking it for a couple of years already. I think it’s great”, Jenni said. Räikkönen’s tattoo is completely designed by himself. It’s not taken from any book.
From: Turun Sanomat 7.4.2007
Here is a Video of Kimi talking about his new Tattoo. He was asked what kind of Tattoo it is, if it is permanently. His answer was: “I don´t know!”
We join Kimi as he turns on the charm in Turkey for a guest appearance on German television
In 129BC, the Romans took control of Anatolia, a land of several independent kingdoms covering the space we now call Turkey. Evidence of this occupation is still tangible, and it is at one of the more spectacular architectural edifices that Kimi Räikkönen finds himself on this warm, bright day in May. One wonders, then, what the Romans might have made of Wetten, Dass..?, a German television spectacular which has taken over the imposing amphitheater at Aspendos for one night only. The quarterly programme is as popular in German-speaking Europe as it´s possible to be, with some 30,000 people applying for tickets each month. The TV audience is estimated at a massive 50 million people, so Kimi can reasonably expect his appearance to make an impact. We arrive at the venue and it´s hot and dry. The Wetten, Dass..? team have already been there for a fortnight, setting up camp behind old Roman structure. This is no small logistical undertaking, and the number of diesel generators whirring away is testament to the amount of power required to keep the show ticking over – and it hasn´t even started yet!
The thought of guesting on a live show that will be watched by some 50 million Europeans doesn´t seem to be affecting Kimi, though. “I´ve done this type of thing before,” he explains. “So I don´t get too nervous.” Upon arrival, we are shown to the Green Room, which is in fact, a bare white-walled structure inside a cavernous tent. Here, the guests of the show each have enclosed areas in which to chill out before the show. Kimi relaxes: eating a banana while flicking though a batch of motorsport magazines. A number of production staff, clipboards clutched tightly underarm, knock from time to time to check that all is well. After Kimi has been afforded time to settle down, we are offered a tour of the vast and imposing amphitheater. Kimi, like so many here today, is taken aback by the sheer power of the venue. “It´s amazing,” he says, looking up at the ranks of worn-smooth stone seating. “It reminds me of when I visited Athens for the Olympics last year – so much history. Really impressive.”
For now, though, the place is taken over by the tools of 21st century television production, with lights, cables, cameras and monitors competing for space. Kimi is shown his marks´, that is: where he will stand, sit, be introduced and so on. He returns to his dressing room to kill a few hours before the live show gets underway. During this respite, Kimi records an interview for the show´s website before posing for photos with the other stars of the show, who include socialite Paris Hilton, Columbian singer Shakira and the popular classical singing quartet, Il Divo. The master of ceremonies is the energetic Thomas Gottschalk, a man clearly excited about having Formula 1´s latest winner as a guest. “It´s a bonus for Wetten, Dass..? to have Kimi on the show,” he says. “Grand Prix drivers are a special breed and the crowd will be really pleased to see him. Kimi is very popular in Germany, but I know that our audiences all over Europe are keen to hear what he has to say. He is very friendly and open-minded, a pleasure to meet.”
The format for the show itself is simple. Each guest is introduced by Gottschalk before joining him on the sofa for a chat. They are then invited to make a decision on the outcome of a, usually precarious, challenge that will be undertaken live by a member of the public. In Kimi´s case, the scenario concerns a Swiss lorry driver who has set himself the challenge to knocking over carefully balanced eggs with his truck and leaving them unbroken – believe me, it makes sense when you see it. Kimi will have the challenge explained to him by Gottschalk and simply has to use his judgement as to whether it will be completed successfully. Should the contestant fail, the celebrity who backed them will undertake a forfeit of the host´s choosing!
An audience of some 5000 people is expected to arrive, with all roads leading to the event chock-full of coaches carrying excitable groups to this ancient cultural centre. It´s relatively calm backstage, though, giving little impression of the organized chaos that is going on outside as the audience make their way in. With a couple of hours to go until showtime, the noise of the masses becomes audible, ramping up excitement levels by another notch. Dusk falls and the sky is grey-blue. Tension is rising like the bubbles in a local hookah pipe. The time seems to pass more quickly now, and it´s soon time for Kimi to make his entrance. He emerges from the back of a black Mercedes-Benz S-Class to make his way through the front of the venue onto the brightly lit stage. He is welcomed by the host and the crowd applaud wildly. There are even a few “Kimi” banners being waved.
After answering questions from the host, who is keen to hear Kimi assess his chances of winning the 2005 drivers´ title, it´s time for Kimi to place his bet. A live link to Switzerland is established, and the protagonist explains his attempt before climbing aboard his substantial lorry. There is silence in the auditorium as he begins to crawl gingerly between the eggs. The challenge lasts for roughly a minute, but it seems that a few eggs have indeed been smashed by the truck. A final count is needed before Kimi´s fate is known. He loses the bet and has to take the forfeit. As the show winds on, more and more celebrities join Kimi on the large beige sofa. The laughter continues for another two hours before an explosion of light and sound brings the event to a carnivalesque close. The crowd make their way back onto their coaches and the riggers start dismantling their apparatus from the impressive old stone – a job that will last well into the next day. And then? 129BC doesn´t seem that far away at all.
From: RacingLine, July 2005
See here the Video of Kimi at Wetten Dass…? with english subtitels:
And see here the Interview before the show:
Lotus will bring the very best out of Kimi Raikkonen, reckon team bosses Eric Boullier and Gerard Lopez, who believe the 2007 world champion is a much more dedicated team player than his past reputation suggested.
Raikkonen has impressed Lotus since joining the team for his Formula 1 comeback after two years in rallying, and was quickest on the first day of winter testing at Jerez last week. Lopez said Lotus had found Raikkonen to be a totally different character to how he was presented during his last F1 stint. “For most people it’s probably one of the big mysteries, because you hear the hearsay and so forth, but we feel very good with him and he clearly feels at home,” Lopez told AUTOSPORT. “He smiles a lot when he’s with us! But most importantly that says he feels more like part of the family.” Lopez added: “I think Kimi has a public image that honestly from what we’ve seen does not translate into how he really is. He’s a very hard worker, very good at providing feedback, and has a good team spirit. “Once we talked to him, once we understood why he was coming back, we really felt comfortable. If you look at what happened [at the test], nobody can say that he’s not on the pace.”
Boullier reckons the way Lotus works is proving ideal for Raikkonen. “We tried to handle his personality and make sure that we don’t bother him too much with too many intrusions, and he’s a real racer,” said Boullier. “This team is full of proper racing people and he has fitted very well because we speak the same language. “We are flexible, but our system is very racing-orientated, and that suits him very well.”
24MAS today announced the release of its new racing title Kimi Räikkönen IceOne Racing for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch, featuring the former Formula One World Champion, Kimi ICEMAN Räikkönen.
Available for download for free on iTunes today, the game takes players through Kimi’s racing career from carts through to rally, with four unique race vehicles and 16 different tracks. Users get the chance to race head to head all around the world in realistic locations with the multi-player match up mode along with the chance to race in arcade and career modes. ”I am really excited to see the game develop from a design document and drawings into something interactive that I can play myself. The game is fun whilst being challenging, the mix of cars and tracks give different experiences in racing and I love to be able to race head to head with my racing friends all around the world,” commented Kimi.
The game has been a joint project with IceOne Racing using their racing expertise to make the game a challenging driving experience. Users can increase the performance and customise the image of the cars along with unlocking new tracks through the in-app purchase in the game. As they progress their driving skills, they can share their racing experiences with friends and fans through Game Center, Facebook and Twitter. In addition to Kimi Räikkönen’s media presence behind the project, 24MAS has also teamed up with Metro International worldwide in a huge print and online marketing campaign across Europe and the Americas taking place over a six week period. ”Working with Kimi and the team at IceOne Racing has been a great project. The combination of a racing legend with a great game, delivers a real racing experience for fans around the world. This is the first in a series of new original games for iOS and Android that 24MAS is bringing to market in 2012,” added Tero Turunen, CEO of 24 MAS.
The Ice One Racing game is available for FREE download on iTunes at the following link:
Official Kimi Raikkonen ICEONE Racing Launch Trailer
Kimi Raikkonen says he has fewer concerns about adapting to 2012-spec Formula 1 after two years away from the sport following his two-day test at Valencia a couple of weeks ago.
The 2007 world champion, speaking at the launch of the new Lotus E20 at Jerez, said that while Pirelli’s tyres were always going to provide his steepest learning curve, he felt that his run on the demo rubber in a two-year-old Renault had displaced any worries about getting up to speed quickly. “The tyres are probably the biggest difference since I left, and that’s what people were saying,” said Raikkonen. “But since the test two weeks ago I have less worries about the whole thing than I had before. So we will see where we are when the first race comes. For me it was nice to get back in the car again. It is very difficult to say how well we went, but I got back all the feeling about driving the car and got used to working with the team. That was really the main goal, to learn. It was interesting to drive and get a little bit back that feeling.”
Raikkonen, who shook the Renault-powered E20 down during a team filming day at Jerez on Monday, said that in the short period of time that he had been working with Lotus he had been convinced that all the ingredients were in place for the squad to return to a championship-winning level. “Nobody knows exactly [how long it will take],” he said. “The team has a lot of hunger to do well and to get back their winning ways but it’s not easy. If it was, everybody would do it. But definitely there are people who want to get back there and put in the effort for it. They have won it before so they have all the tools to do it. It’s just about getting everything right and being up there all the time so hopefully it can happen soon, but everybody seems hungry to do it.”
Raikkonen said that he was not expecting many changes on his return and that many of the faces in the paddock were similar to those he had left behind when he walked away from the sport at the end of 2009. Responding to a question that suggested he was no longer enjoying the sport when he left, Raikkonen replied: “That was only your opinion, I would have left earlier if I wasn’t having fun. “I always said that I loved the racing and I have always been very happy to race. There were a lot of stories from all of your [the press] side about my motivation, but I never had any issues with that. This has come from nothing from my mind. I don’t think I look at Formula 1 any differently,” he said. “It’s a new year and there are some different things from in the last few years, but I know the sport, I know how things work here. The racing is going to be a little different but all the other things are more or less the same. OK from team-to-team it changes in things outside of the racing but I feel sure it is going to be similar experience.”
Lotus has been impressed by the speed at which Kimi Raikkonen has adapted to his new car after just two full days of testing in Jerez.
Raikkonen is returning to the sport this season after two years in rallying and had his first real taste of his new car last week at Jerez. Raikkonen set the fastest time on the first day of the test and trackside operations director Alan Permane said his whole approach had been hugely impressive. “There’s an awful lot more to Formula One than just putting one lap together and that’s what makes a champion,” he told ESPNF1. “That’s the sort of thing you can see in Kimi and see how good he is; how he uses the car over a long run and how he looks after the tyres. He’s never driven these tyres before and already after a couple of days you can see that he’s understanding them and altering his driving to look after them – he’s got a lot of feel in the car.”
Asked if Raikkonen has the potential to be the leader the team was looking for last year, Permane said: “Being a world champion, we can’t get a lot better than that. It’s a difficult one, the question of a leader and do we need a leader. I think a driver will become a leader if he delivers and we can deliver to him. Then he can tell us what he wants, we give that to him and then he delivers again, so we build up a trust in each other. I think that’s how a driver becomes a leader. “I think so far everything seems to be working well. Of course there will be ups and downs, we’ve had a golden week far beyond our own expectations. That, of course, can’t carry on. It would be lovely if it could, but there will be ups and downs and that will test us and that’s when you see how strong people’s characters are.”
Permane added that Raikkonen has been very specific about the requests he has made of the team, but has paid them back with “excellent” feedback. “He’s very easy to work with, very, very easy indeed – no complaints at all,” Permane said. “His feedback is excellent, he spends an awful lot of time with his engineers looking at stuff, going through data and telling us what he wants. From what I can see, he’s happy firstly with the car we’ve given him, but also the other stuff – the bits that he asked for when he came, the type of steering wheel he wanted, the seat, the seat belts, things like that. We’ve also delivered the braking stuff he wanted, he’s got all that. I think he’s a pretty happy guy.”
Kimi about Jenni, money and children. Seiska asked Kimi Räikkönen 77 questions in his home in Porkkala.
What kind of chances of success do you think Lotus has this season?
It’s difficult to say, nobody knows yet. We will see after the first tests where we are going.
Do you have hunger for another WDC?
Yes. You always have that as a goal. I will try a lot, let´s see if that’s enough or not.
You have said that Lotus has a homey atmosphere compared to your earlier teams, how do you see the difference?
Each team has always been different. Lotus has however a different kind of management. They are younger and racing-spirited and not any uptight people.
Is Sebastian Vettel your best buddy in F1?
Yes, I know him best and have spent most of time with him than with any other drivers.
Do you have any enemy or someone you can’t stand there?
No I haven’t but it’s difficult to say what other people think.
Have you already met your team mate Romain Grosjean? Is he a good guy?
I have met him and he is a nice normal guy.
Where do you see yourself after ten years?
Difficult to say but hopefully everything is still okay.
What plans do you have for your life after F1?
No plans. I have never had any terribly long plans.
In how good physical shape are you?
I guess in the same shape as before. I know pretty well in which shape one has to be.
They operated your wrist after the recent motor sledge-race. Has it healed well?
Yeah. It’s now completely okay.
They often talk about your money in public. You have a fortune of over 100 million euros. What does money mean to you?
I guess it means the same as it means to other people too. I get a certain amount of money for the job that I do. Some think it’s right, some think it’s wrong. I myself have however made all the work so it doesn’t make me ashamed at all. Money makes some things easier but it really doesn’t solve everything in life.
Has the big fortune made you out of touch with reality or do you even think about monetary matters?
*laughing* Definitely not! I’m just the same as I was before. It makes some things easier but it also brings a lot of negative things along.
Do you pay your bills yourself or do you use an internet-bank for example?
No I don’t. My mom takes care of quite many of my things.
How much money will you get for your next season in Lotus?
I get something.
How have you invested your money?
Well I have a few apartments and something like that… You have to live somewhere.
They have thought in public that you are part-owner in Lotus, is that true?
No it’s not.
Would you like to own your own F1-team someday?
I don’t have the passion for it. In the end it’s quite cruel business.
Have you ever donated a lot of money to charity?
I have done that every now and then. At the moment I have this small thing going on with SOS Children’s Village.
Then what is your biggest loss in poker?
I doesn’t come to my mind right now, but usually I lose rather than win.
Do you play other gambling games?
I guess I have sometimes played some pajazzo etc. if they are seen as gambling games, but nothing more.
They say that you are genuinely a laidback guy and don’t look like you would be nervous of any racing situations. What kind of situations make you nervous?
Hard to say. Sometimes normal things can make me nervous. It depends on the place but I am also nervous about races.
What kind of things are you afraid of?
There are no things that I would be afraid of. I don’t have fear for high places or things like that.
You have many houses but how many homes do you have?
This place in Porkkala is one home and I have another home in Switzerland. I don’t think that I have any more homes than anyone else has.
You travel a lot. How many nights per year are you here in Porkkala?
I can’t say at all. I spend more time here in the summer when the weather is good.
Is the place in Kaskisaari more of a partying place than home?
No. I use it when I have for example some job stuff in Helsinki.
How do you decorate your apartment? I doubt you go to IKEA by yourself.
No I don’t go to IKEA. This house has been designed by interior-people.
Is there something in the interior that Jenni likes and that you let her have with long teeth?
Well I don’t have terribly much that I would have objected to. I don’t pay attention to those kind of details. We have a pretty similar taste but interior is more a thing for women. I’m sure it’s more important to them than it is to me for example. We should just let the women take care of these things!
Which room is your favorite room?
I guess I spend most time on the couch in front of the TV.
What do you serve your friends when they come and visit you?
It depends of course on which day it is! *laughing* I don’t usually ask terribly much, they find their way to the fridge themself.
Do you go to the supermarket yourself?
I go there quite often. I like to go there but it also depends upon which time you go there. Sometimes there are many people etc. but I like to circle around there.
Do you clean your home yourself?
Yeah I clean sometimes. I do the normal cleaning myself, like wash my own clothes.
Do you have a housekeeper?
No. A cleaning lady comes twice a month to sweep the biggest thrash.
Do you make food yourself?
I make food if I’m home alone.
What is your speciality?
I guess it’s chicken pasta. It’s the easiest to make. I’m not any passionate cook.
What is your favorite drink?
I drink a lot of milk.
How do you prepare a White Russian the right way?
I don’t know since I haven’t drank White Russians for years. I’m sure I couldn’t make them the right way.
What about cranberry vodka?
I guess you mix vodka with some cranberry.
Is Jenni a good cook?
She is a bit better than me but if we would compete I think it would be quite an even competition.
Does she cook for you often?
Every now and then. We don’t have any rule book about those things, that someone would always have to cook. Often we go out for dinner and sometimes pick up something.
Do you have pets?
We have three dogs. My mom keeps two Jack Russell terriers and the German Shepard is in Switzerland.
What names do they have?
Reiska, Peppi and Ajax.
Is it true that you are allergic to Jenni’s horses?
I’m allergic to quite many things like cats and horses. I get a stuffed up nose if I spend a lot of time with them. I had more allergies during the army-time.
What TV-programs do you watch?
This and that. Mostly sport. Yesterday I was staring at something that my mom watched.
Your favorite movie?
What Finnish icehockey-league do you support?
I don’t personally support anything special. Of course I hope that Espoo’s and Helsinki’s leagues would do well. I don’t follow icehockey with clenched teeth and despite rumors I don’t own anything from Tampere’s Ilves. May the best league win.
How often do you party?
It depends a lot. Now I haven’t had time to party because of having so much to do. Of course if I’m free and want to go, then I go. I don’t have any regulations concerning that. These things are related to normal life just like it is with everybody else too.
How is a good party made, a party where you enjoy yourself?
I guess it’s the good gang. That’s where it usually takes off.
Does it have to be karaoke?
It has been less karaoke although it’s usually been fun there. It’s not necessary but I rather go to a smaller and more quiet place than to some big disco.
How much and what do you drink during a bar-night?
Hmmm… Hard to say what I drink. There is no main drink. I usually order a lot of cranberry vodka because my buddies drink a lot of that. I often drink vodka and vichy if I drink.
Are you a person who likes to be comfortable?
Well not any more than anyone else is. I’m usually fine with everything.
The sea is here beside, do you swim a lot?
I swim in the summer. The last time I took a swim in that sea was just before the ice came.
Cold or hot shower?
It depends a little but I like a really cold shower too. It refreshes quite well.
How much time do you spend in the shower?
Well as long as I get clean I guess. I don’t have any stopwatch there for crying out loud!
Do you sing in the shower?
Do you wear a bathrobe or do you walk around with a towel over your hips?
With a towel.
Your favorite cologne/scent?
I only use the basic deodorant. You get it easy from the gas station!
Do you blowdry your hair?
What is your favorite music?
I usually listen to Finnish music from the radio.
You mean radio Suomi Pop?
I have been less now that people there have changed. It’s not as good in the morning as it used to be.
How many cars do you own?
Five I think. Audi, Fiat, Mercedes and VW. I guess I get some Lotus too soon but any luggage won’t fit into them.
How many tattoos do you have and do they have some meaning?
Two. I don’t think that they have any special meaning.
You have told that you would want to have two children. At which stage do you think starting a family would be actual?
Of course you want family. It doesn’t mean that there should be one or two children. Hopefully I get a family at some point and that all children would be healthy. I think that’s the main thing.
I heard that you are very fond of children. Is it true?
Yes, I like children. I don’t have any of my own but I like spending time with them.
What is the secret of your and Jenni’s lasting marriage?
I don’t think that we have any secret. Of course we have arguments and nagging at times just like in every other relationship but it’s normal life.
How often do you see Jenni?
We are about every day together at home unless we are on some trips. It has been like that ever since we met.
What mutual hobbies do you have?
I guess just being home since we both have our own hobbies. I do my own things and Jenni rides every day.
What is a good relationship like according to you?
I’m sure everyone have a different relationship and you can’t order what is good for anyone. For as long as both have fun and both feel good to be together is what defines it.
Which one of you are more jealous?
Hard to tell.
Are you jealous of each other?
I’m sure eveyone is. Even though you would say that you aren’t jealous I think everyone is.
Are you happy?
Yes. I don’t have anything to complain about.
Do you think that Jenni is also happy with you?
Yes. We wouldn’t be together if we weren’t happy. Like I said there are always arguments every now and then but I think it’s the same for everyone else too.
Do you read Seiska?
I read it every day now and then because we get it in Switzerland! Yeah, the bible comes to our home (laughing).
So you call Seiska jokingly a bible?
It is sometimes like that, yes!