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I Had Better Things To Do Than Sit On Planes And Stay In Hotels

Former Formula One driver Kimi Raikkoen says that the reason he left the sport at the end of last season was because he has better things to do than sit on planes and stay in hotels.

The Iceman, who began his F1 career in 2001 with the Sauber team was always just interested in racing and none of the other things that came with competing in the sport.

Speaking to Bild, Raikkonen said that Formula One was never his life and that racing was the only thing that he was interested in and now he has other interests outside of the sport such as spending more time with his family.

Raikkonen has also confirmed that he may never step foot in the Formula One paddock again.

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Raikkonen Knew In March That The 2021 Season Would Be His Last In Formula One

Kimi Raikkonen went into the 2021 Formula One season with the knowledge that it would be his last in the sport.

The Iceman who began his career in Formula One with the Sauber F1 Team in 2001 went on to win the championship in 2007 with Ferrari before taking a break from the sport in 2010 and 2011 before returning to the sport with the Lotus F1 Team in 2012.

Kimi won the 2012 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix while he also took victory at the 2013 Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne. The Iceman returned to Ferrari in 2014 before returning to Sauber in 2019.

At the start of the 2021 Formula One season in Bahrain in March, Raikkonen wrote in an envelope that he was looking forward to the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix as he knew it would be his last.

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It Was Nice To See So Many People Show Their Appreciation

Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN Formula One Team’s Kimi Raikkonen says that it was nice to see so people show their appreciation for the Finn in what was the Iceman final race.

unfortunately for the Iceman, brake failure saw the Finn retire from the race. Speaking following the race he said:

It’s been nice to see so many people showing their appreciation today, even if the race didn’t go as we hoped. We had an issue after the pit-stop, a technical problem that meant we finished earlier today. That’s racing, sometimes things fail, but today’s result doesn’t influence how I feel about my career. I’m happy to move on to a normal life, I am looking forward to it. Of course, I will miss a lot of the great people I met over the years; 20 years have gone quickly, I made lots of memories, some good, some bad, and these are going to stay with me forever.”

Antonio Giovinazzi retired from the race and speaking following the action he said:

“It’s a pity to end the season like this, the first DNF after a full season of finishing. We were having a good race, fighting a world champion like Vettel, but at least I could enjoy watching the final laps of this race. It’s been a great battle between Max and Lewis, both would have deserved the title. It’s been an emotional day overall, seeing Kimi retire and seeing all the things the team did for us today. He’s a great person, very fair and all of F1 will miss him. As for me, I hope this is just a ‘see you soon’: my full focus is now on Formula E, but I hope to be back next year. I’m happy with my journey, the way I progressed over the years, I gave everything I could.”

Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN Formula One Team Principal and CEO of Sauber Motorsports AG Frédéric Vasseur said:

Ending any race with two retirements is always disappointing, even more so when it’s the final one of the season. We really wanted to give our drivers a better send-off and finish the season with a good result. As we head into the off-season, we’ll need to take the positives from the year past and use them to build on them for 2022. We need to acknowledge that the step forward we made in performance this year was good, but unfortunately the results didn’t back it up. We have let some big chances get by, we have made some mistakes and we didn’t really get everything we deserved. There is a lot of work to do in the winter but we are prepared for it and we can’t wait to see the results of all our efforts when we line up on the grid next year.”

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Kimi Hoping For A Solid Result In His Final Race

Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN Formula One Team’s Kimi Raikkonen says thst despite starting tomorrow’s season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix towards the back of the field he is hoping for a strong end to his Formula One career.

“I was on a pretty good lap on my final run of Q1, the time looked good, but I got sideways in turn 13 and that was it. It’s a pity as the car felt nice. Tomorrow is another day, we start pretty far at the back but we will try to have as good a race as possible and bring home a good result.”

Antonio Giovinazzi starts his final race for Alfa Romeo from 14th place and speaking following the action he said:

“I think we achieved close to the maximum we could today: maybe P12 or P13 were possible, but Q3 was a step too far. I had a run on medium as I wanted to try them, but my final run on softs was spoiled by the traffic at the end of the outlap: my tyres and my brakes were too cold in sector one and we couldn’t improve. It’s been a bit like this all season with the traffic, but it is what it is. We can still have a good race from 14th, with a good first lap and a good strategy to see what we can achieve from there. I want to enjoy this final race of the season and have a good result to say goodbye to the team.”

Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN Team Principal Frédéric Vasseur said:

It’s very much a case of mixed feelings after today’s qualifying. Antonio probably achieved a result close to the maximum potential of the car, and broadly reflective of where we were throughout practice; Kimi, unfortunately, was setting a very fast time in his final run in Q1, probably the fifth or sixth fastest time, but all the advantage went in sector three. It’s disappointing as we could have had two cars solidly in Q2 on a day where there were very small margins. Still, we can take some comfort from a decent pace that should give us a fighting chance tomorrow. The objective remains the same, to finish the season on a high.”

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A Solid Day For Alfa Romeo Racing In Abu Dhabi

The Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN Formula One Team had a solid opening day to their final race weekend of the 2021 season with Kimi Raikkonen ending the day in 16th despite crashing heavily on his final run.

The Iceman said:

It had been a normal Friday until the last lap. We have been trying things, seeing what happens and what works, as we always do: we had finished nearly all our work when I had my accident. I just lost the rear in a place where there wasn’t any run-off and went into the wall: these things happen. It was interesting to try the track after the modifications. Making changes is good and I can see why they were done, but I am not sure whether overtaking will be any easier. In the end, it is what it is, it’s different and we’ll have to adapt.”

Antonio Giovinazzi ended the day in 12th place and speaking following the action he said:

We had a good start to our weekend and, overall, it was a good day. We made a decent improvement from FP1 to FP2 and if we can repeat it tonight, we should be in a good place for qualifying. The new track layout is quite cool, it’s more fun to drive as they replaced slow chicanes, which weren’t much fun in these cars, with some fast corners. I am not sure if this will help much with overtaking, but it’s a lot faster. Tomorrow will be interesting: we want to build on the strong result from Jeddah, the fight in the midfield will be close and everything will hinge on hundredths of a second, but I am confident we can have a good day.”

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Giovinazzi To Pay Tribute To Kimi This Weekend

Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN Formula One Team’s Antonio Giovinazzi will compete in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix this weekend with a helmet design inspired by his teammate Kimi Raikkonen’s 2007 championship winning helmet.

The helmet features a simple message, Thank You Kimi.

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The End Of An Era At Alfa Romeo This Weekend

The curtain falls of what has been an absolutely incredible 2021 Formula One season as the teams and drivers prepare for this weekend’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

For the Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN Formula One team however, not only is it the end of the season but the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix marks the end of an era for the Swiss-based outfit as, after three seasons together they say goodbye to both Kimi Raikkonen and Antonio Giovinazzi.

While Antonio will embark on a new chapter in his racing career making his ABB FIA Formula E race debut with Dragon Penske, Kimi will call time on what has been a tremendous career for the Iceman which resulted in him winning the 2007 Formula One world championship with Ferrari.

Speaking ahead of his last Formula One Grand Prix, Raikkonen said:

It’s the last race of the season and, this time, the last race of my career, but I don’t think too much about it. Of course, I know it will feel different once I cross the finish line and I know this chapter of my life is closed, but once I am in the cockpit, it will be a race like any other. I want to finish this experience with a good result, for myself and for the team, and I also want to enjoy this weekend with my family and my friends, who will be with me to say goodbye to Formula One.

For Antonio Giovinazzi it is for now at least, the end of his Formula One journey and speaking and speaking ahead of the race this weekend the Italian said:

I approach Abu Dhabi full of confidence after such a good race in Jeddah. I wanted a result like that before the end of the season to show what I can do, to show that I have not given up and that I will keep on fighting until the final chequered flag; now I want another strong race to finish my three years with the team well. I owe it to all those who believe in me and keep supporting me and I owe it to myself, to finish the season with the result I know I can deliver. It will be an interesting weekend and I’m ready for it.

Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN Formula One Team Principal and CEO of Sauber Motorsport AG Frederic Vasseur commented saying:

The final race of the season is always a special moment, even more so this year when we head into some drastic changes, both within and without the team. We will obviously want to celebrate and honour Kimi and Antonio and their contribution to our team and the sport, but we also need to focus on the race weekend: there’s a job to finish and we need to be fully committed to it until the final lap of the race, giving everything we have for a good result. Finishing with a strong performance would be a huge boost for the whole team as we head into the winter.

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It Makes No Difference To Me, I Am Not Coming Back

Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN Formula One Team’s Kimi Raikkonen says that it makes no difference as to what he thinks of the Jeddah Corniche circuit in Saudi Arabia as he won’t be coming back next year.

Speaking during his post race interview following Sunday’s race he said that it doesn’t make a difference to him about the circuit.

The Iceman heads into his final Formula One race in Abu Dhabi before he retires from the sport following an illustrious career.

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Ferrari Pay Tribute To Kimi

Scuderia Ferrari has paid tribute to their former F1 driver Kimi Raikkonen, who will retire from the sport following this weekend’s season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

The Iceman had two spells at Maranello from 2007 to 2009, he won the championship in his first season with the team. The Finn returned to Ferrari from 2014 to 2018 before returning to the Sauber team under Alfa Romeo Racing in 2019.

Ferrari tweeted on Tuesday:

Here at Paddock Eye we were fortunate to chat to Kimi last season:

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A Strong Qualifying For Alfa Romeo

The Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN Formula One Team had a strong qualifying for Sunday’s Saudi Arabian Grand Prix with Antonio Giovinazzi starting the race from tenth while Kimi Raikkonen starts the race from 12th.

Speaking following qualifying, Giovinazzi said:

“It was a great qualifying and I had a lot of fun, the car today was just brilliant. We knew the medium tyres would be better and we showed just how good they were in Q2. The soft in Q3 weren’t as good and we struggled a bit more, it took us longer to get them in the right window, but tomorrow we will start on medium which is a positive. I could have improved even more on my Q2 lap but I had a little kiss with the wall on my final flying lap: thankfully I could still make it through. Starting in P10 with our preferred tyres, on a track like this, will be good and I can’t wait for the race. We had a strong weekend straight from FP1 and now we just need to keep this pace, maybe with a bit of the luck that has eluded us all season, to bring home a good result.”

Kimi Raikkonen was happy with his qualifying performance saying:

“It was a good performance, we were really close to making it to Q3 but it didn’t work out in the end. The last corner wasn’t that good and it cost us a little bit of time, but in the end what made the difference was that probably we should have stayed on the mediums for an extra lap. I wanted to try the soft tyres and it didn’t work. Still, we are in a good place to start: it’s hard to tell how the race will go, it will surely be important to be in the thick of it and we’ll give everything to bring home a good result.”

Frederic Vasseur, Team Principal of Alfa Romeo Racing and CEO of Sauber Motorsport AG said:

The team delivered a really good performance today, we achieved a good result and we were the closest we have been all year to having two cars in Q3. We capitalised on the strong start of our weekend, yesterday in practice, and went on to build on it. Both drivers were comfortable in their cars and delivered good laps, at the limit, when it mattered. Still, there are no points on offer today: we still have a long race ahead of us and we’ll need to make sure we maximise our chances tomorrow. Nobody knows how the race is going to shape up: it will be a very interesting evening, that’s for sure.