F1 Winter Break
Ferrari takes the plunge with Raikkonen/Alonso super team
Scuderia Ferrari
Posted By: James Allen  |  11 Sep 2013   |  2:06 pm GMT  |  735 comments

Ferrari today confirmed the hotly anticipated news that Kimi Raikkonen has been re-hired for a two year contract starting in 2014.

The all star line up with Fernando Alonso will provide a compelling story for F1 over the next two seasons at a time when F1 risked becoming a little stale with the domination of Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel.

The Finn, 33, is the last driver to win the world championship for Ferrari in 2007 and he will bring this heritage with him when he lines up with Alonso, who replaced him at the Scuderia in 2010. Ironically Raikkonen was paid off the last year of his contract in order to make way for Alonso. At the time the briefings from the team were that Raikkonen was not a “leader” and that Alonso had been hired for this as much as anything.

Four years later and with no world title to show for it, despite two near misses, both sides are frustrated and Ferrari has poured oil on troubled waters with this move.

Now the team has decided to bite on the bullet and clearly the Constructors’ championship is the goal. This has not been possible in the last four years as Felipe Massa has not scored enough points.

The strategy makes sense on that level. However what everyone will be curious to see is what effect Raikkonen’s arrival will have on Alonso. The Spaniard favours a lead driver scenario within a team – with him as the lead driver – and Raikkonen’s arrival will clearly complicate his life.

“For anyone thinking that the choice of Kimi is somehow an anti-Alonso choice, I can put their minds at rest,” said team principal Stefano Domenicali. “At Ferrari, everyone knows the interests of the team come first and only then those of the individual.

“Fernando is a key asset for this team and he will be for a long time. I’m sure he is the first to be happy with a choice made to strengthen the group, because he is too intelligent not to realise that a stronger team can only be an advantage.”

Alonso welcomed his new team mate,

“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,” he said.

He has three and a half years left on his contract, but relations are clearly strained, as illustrated by Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo’s unprecedented public rebuke in July.

Should he decide to leave, Ferrari has a world champion in its team and a strong driver, who has proved he can win, given the machinery and who scores a lot of points.

Intriguingly Raikkonen’s contract runs to the end of 2015, the same period as Sebastian Vettel’s contract at Red Bull. Vettel has always left the door open to the possibility of driving for another team later in his career and his one year extension this year from 2014 to 2015 leaves him that option.

The superstar pairing also heaps pressure on the Ferrari technical department to build a quick car for next year. Rory Byrne has been working on the project with Ferrari’s designers around 100 days a year and James Allison was recruited from Lotus earlier this year. But the pressure is on the engine builders to produce a powerful and efficient power train and until this breaks cover and runs on track with the Mercedes and Renault engined cars we will not know if the Ferrari superteam will be title contenders. The pressure would be incredible should they have a similar level of competitiveness to this years McLaren, for example.

Raikkonen’s move is a huge disappointment for Lotus, which has been working hard to sort out its finances to keep him, but has run out of time. After the departure of Allison, Ferrari has now taken Lotus’ other prize asset. The team has punched well above its financial weight in F1 these last two seasons and Eric Boullier and his team will be knocked back by this second raid.

Nico Hulkenberg is expected to fill Raikkonen’s seat.

Now that the Raikkonen move has been made, the other pieces of the driver moves jigsaw will start to fall into place.


52 Grands Prix 2007-9
World champion 2007
9 Victories
5 Pole positions
17 podiums

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at last Ferrari do something good for the team, shame it took so long, great news. Now hopefully they can make a good car next year and have these 2 battle it out. Fan of Ferrari over the drivers, but still expect Alonso to beat Kimi, although Kimi is awesome. Either way, win win.


I'm not at all convinced that Alonso will be driving at Ferrari next year.

If not Alonso, who else should be there?


There are just so many opinions on the Alonso vs Kimi debate. What's great is that we can see this play out in real life in 2014! Can't wait.

Hope Alonso doesn't pack up and leave for Lotus.


here's a fact- alonso was classified 3rd, BEHIND lewis the rookie. now a simple question has to be why do you guys all think that the rb10 will still be the car to beat next year? you forget that present and past performances are no guarantee for the future. for all we know one of the smaller teams could crack the regulations and spring ahead while everyone is still struggling to come to grips with the new cars. 2009 is a good example.


Red Bull should have won 2009.

The 009 Honda may well have been the most intensively designed car in history; how many wind-tunnels and super-computers did they use?


2009 a good example is it? A car developed from mid season before by Honda? small team?

Good Facts.


last time i checked, honda was at the tail end of the grid before 2009. thats a fact. another fact is brawn had a minor budget. so yes they are very much facts. i wonder what where you watching


If I were an Alonso fan, I would be down right gutted. This is the end of Alonso's stint as the "most complete" driver. Raikkonen is on the rampage.


You are totally right! Reading all these silly comments from clear FA [mod]makes me laugh! What he has done over the last couple of years has been great, he is truly a fantastic driver, and now with his matured attitudes, a team mate like Kimi will only spur him on to greater successes. Bring on 2014, bring on the downfall of Red Bull!

PS, Alonso just saved a well supported pro cycling team, so he's a nice guy :p


Superb post PHILL

you have made my day

Alonso is the best driver i have even seen in F1. For me the greatest driver in the history of F1

Kimi's arrival can only be positive for alonso and ferrari. Alonso can push himself even more than before

It makes me to chuckle a lot when people say kimi has joined Ferrari to topple alonso. He cannot beat massa in the dream machinery F2008 when they drove for Ferrari as team mates.

Alonso can wring a lap time out of any machinery or even a truck. FORZA Alonso


Bring on the downfall of Redbull? I haven't heard anything so childish in my life... everything rides on this new engine formula and if Renault brings out a dud then Vettel and Redbull won't win next year but same thing could be said fore Ferrari and 'Mercedes performance engines'.


I now expect Alonso to either sabotage Kimi's car, or leave Ferrari.

This is a powder keg with oodles of entertainment for 2014.

My bet is that Kimi will beat Alonso handily, especially if Ferrari build him a steering wheel he has no issues with.


Quade and all the other loudmouths betting on kimi should actually bet on kimi instead of just type on a keyboard. I guess if we wanted logic we could study the bookmakers odds to see who technically, factually should win. My...bet? No bookmaker would pick Kimi over him. But there will always be loudmouths who speak with such assurance. .. lets see where they are at the end of next year. By the way in terms of careers Kimi has had much better equipment and teams over the years than Alonso. He's nowhere in terms of results by comparison. Facts don't lie. I never remember Kimi ever winning a poll on driver of the year, if we tallied that up the result would be a joke also.

I think this is a stupid move from Ferrari, Hulkenberg is a much better bet. Kimi is abysmal in qualifying, his racecraft is good but so is Alonso so why hnot get a fast driver for qualifying? I don't understand the logic, they never casted about the constructors so why now? Unless there was a hidden issue they could get a young driver like Hulk in and he'd learn off the mature driver. Now they have 2 old drivers in a team, they won't teach each other anything and the only fire they'll have is when their egos are bruised. My only thought is if they feel next year will be such a drastic change in rules that they want the two most experienced guys to pick up points from the very first race and capitalise on unfamiliarity that younger drivers may display in differing situations.


Lol! You don't understand the logic?

They expect one "older driver" to huff off and cost them zero money in broken contracts. Simples!

Darrin from Canada

Quade--- you are the best! Great comment, I spit coffee into my keyboard when I read it!


If Raikkonen's performance is on par with his previous Ferrari outing, then Alonso won't have to resort to anything.


Wishful thinking?


Leave Ferrari and go where, exactly? He's still under contract with them and there's not another viable seat. We all know the teams to be with if you want a chance at a championship, and all those seats are full.

And sabotage? I'll just ignore that silly comment.

The major rules changes next year are bound to shake things up a bit. I think it's too early for all the alarmism. Let's see how things pan out a few races into 2014 season before we get carried away, here.


This is the best thing to happen in F1 in years


Good for VET.

LEW/ROS splitting points at Merc.

ALO/KIM splitting points at Ferrari.

Mean while Vettel....

ANOTHER stupid decision by LdM and Dom.

Tornillo Amarillo

Interesting comment regarding VETTEL will have more chances for the WDC while Ferrari and Merc split points.

But I think that ALONSO will try to win while KIMI will try to be in P2 or P3 ALWAYS... ALWAYS...

So maybe is VETTEL and ALONSO who split wins, also with HAMILTON and ROSBERG, while KIMI could be Champion because he would have more points!


Exactly that


NR isn't allowed to race LH remember "don't pass nico"


No that wasn't me I can just verify that now, and please what are you talking about now I agree with David C, Nico is a ckear number 2, but in reality overall performance he is closely matched with Hamilton just team orders and mechanical failures all seem very suspect, but thrn thats to be expected if I was Ross I'd favour Hamilton too, a slightly faster driver and not as static as Nico, I too would have promised Hamilton number 1 status to be written in his contract. I do believe Mercedes have their best chance at the title next year, they need Hamilton on the ball just like 2008 when Kovalainen was his rear guard, as goes for Raikkonen/Alonso? Who knows maybe Kimi will be fired up and when he does he is almost unstoppable just like in 2005, his pace was scary, no wonder Alonso is getting twitchy.


Are you sure you're not Dave C? There was nothing wrong with telling Nico to hold station ... the last pit stops were done, there was no threat from behind, and no way of catching the leaders, so just bring the cars home in the order they were in.

It would be interesting to know if Nico's engine in Hungary was the same one used in Malaysia. Nico should've fallen back out of Lewis' wake in Malaysia, to help the engine. If it was, then he'd look pretty foolish, wouldn't he?

Nico has been less than helpful to the team effort in Germany and in Italy, when clearly Lewis and he were on different race strategies. He eventually moved over in each instance, but not as soon as he could've. Don't think for a second that hasn't been noted on the Mercedes pitwall.


LdM and Dom probably care more about the constructors instead of the WDC.


keep dreaming Alonso is being matched at times by subdued number 2 Massa. Alonso will be toast by non-number 2 Kimi. He got toasted in 2007 by a boy.


Yes, but Alonso would have been champion that year had Daddy Hamilton not gone crying to the FIA in Hungary. And as we have found out from many loaded statements from Coulthard, based on his extensive knowledge and experience on the team and its leadership, that the likelihood the official version of events is true is very low. Remember "we're racing Alonso"?

We all know Dennis was undermining his own driver. And it has long been known that Alonso's strategy was changed without his knowledge at the last moment at several races and his data was handed over to Lewis - whereas Alonso was not allowed to get his colleague's data back in reciprocation. Let's go back to Hungary. What started the incident? Can you remember? It wasn't the Spaniard.

And it shows how dumb McLaren are these days. They could have won two or three championships in a row with Alonso.


Actually, I think that Alonso has looked better at Ferrari against Massa than Kimi did. I would not be surprised to see Alonso prevail against Kimi.


We'll soon see how subdued Massa was, what happens if Alonso starts knocking chucks out of Kimi's reputation?

Raikkonen should have gone to Red Bull or stayed put, in the end it looks like it all came down to dollars.

As for Ferrari this could be Senna and Prost all over, they really don't have a clue how to manage people. They crushed Massa to focus 100% on Alonso, now they bring in Kimi to put manners on Alonso!

The problem isn't the drivers its the car and has been since 2008. Red Bull and Mercedes must be rolling about in laughter.


" They crushed Massa to focus 100% on Alonso, now they bring in Kimi to put manners on Alonso!"

Totally agree with this line.. They need stronger management.. They can't expect drivers to "manage the team " - all they want to do is get the best car they can ( ahead of team mate preferred) and win races. !!


Kimi won't be a number two.


Toasted? LoL. What do you call what ALO has been doing to (the non-rookie) HAM (in the absence of R Dennis) since 2010 - in a slower package for majority of the time? We are not talking about equal points anymore, but being behind ALO xx points in the final standing...each and every year. "slaughtered and grilled - on strong fire"?


Yielding how many titles for Alonso?

Yeah, 'nuff said.

Alonso's a great driver. But here it's first or nothing. 2007 was a great performance by a rookie, but in the end it didn't yield a title. A wasted opportunity.


Is this article not about Raikkonen moving to Ferrari to join Alonso? Why on earth are we talking about Hamilton?


Not a huge FA admirer, but let's not forget that it was FA who BEAT MS the last two years he was driving competitively for Ferrari. Remember the pass on the outside in Japan? A very cut throat political business, this.

Thanks again James -- BTW, what strengths does Allison bring to the table for Ferrari, may have missed this detail?


In response to Igor bda: MS failure to win the 2006 WDC cannot be put down to technical failure; FA engine blew in Monza also. I am a big fan of both drivers, but MS lost that championship when he unnecessarily parked his car in Monaco quali


Exactly! In 2005, neither Schumacher nor Ferrari were in contention. And you know what?! If Schumacher's Ferrari had not blown its engine in the final part of the 2006 Japanese GP, Schumacher would have taken the title as well, regardless of the 10th position penalty and the tire blow out in Brazil.



Apologies for poor grammar


On the topic of technical directors/ aero guys and the like we here of decent drivers coming up through the ranks but never here the work of the mechanics etc. any chance you could do a piece about the young up and coming mechanics / other team members who are highly rated in the business as someone who's close to the paddock. There must be a new bianchi/vettel type up and coming mechanic or aero guy who teams all recognise their hard work ?


2005 Ferrari was NOT competitive, or cant you remember? Schumi only won 1 race that year....and it happened to be Indianapolis where majority of the teams (all who were using Michelin tires) didnt start the race. Overall 2005 Ferrari was propably even worse than the 2009 Ferrari....so the only year FA really beat Schumi in competitive Ferrari was in 2006.

Dont get me wrong, I dont mean to underestimate Alonso, but so many seems to underestimate Kimi and his chances to beat Alonso....Dont forget who still happens to be Ferrari's latest champion and who has been the most conistent driver the past 2 years. Kimi is real threat to Alonso and denying this would be silly thinking


He's the next best guy to have if you can't get Newey..

Aero, packaging and innovation

VP of Common Sense

Toasted? 109-109? Alonso was the first McLaren driver that year to win a pole. He was the first McLaren driver to win a race in 2007. He was also the first to win his 2nd, 3rd & 4th GP for McLaren in 2007. Perhaps you were toasted when you made your silly comment.


A rookie is rookie..and a double WC was a double WC .. I think toast is not too far off the mark when you really weigh it up


@Anop, you have to get your facts straight too. If Felipe stayed ahead with Kimi behind, then Lewis would've won the title, on countback from Alonso (more 2nd places). Alonso needed to get 2nd to win the title.


@Peter: Fernando was not in contention in the final race? It's Hilarious. Get your facts correct. If Felipe wouldn't have moved over to let Kimi win then Fernando would have been the champion.


Ummm! Mclaren was supporting Lewis! Have you forgotten what Ron Dennis said after China 2007. By the way Fernando was in contention for the WDC in the last race.


@Peter Freeman: All yous said is right except: " Hamilton was in contention to win the World Championship in the final race, Alonso was not." Actually Hamilton was first, Alonso was second (4 points behind) and Raikkonen third (7 points behind Hamilton) in points table before the last race. So Alonso was in contention.


Lewis wasn't a rookie in the true sence of the word. 1000s of miles of testing, gp2 champ, f3 etc and with mclaren from age 13. He was the best prepared driver ever to come into f1. Alonso was adapting to a new car,new engine,new tyres and had to adapt his driving style. You can see today how Lewis has been struggling to adapt to Mercedes as he has only won 1 race and Nico has won 2.


lewis also won four races that year & was leading the championship for most of the season-109 pts a piece yes but it wasnt alonso who's score looked the most impressive!


Lewis was a rookie who more than matched a WDC. I'd say toasted is the right word.


Alonso was a double world champion. Hamilton was a Rookie, a rank beginner. Hamilton was in contention to win the World Championship in the final race, Alonso was not. Hamilton was ranked ahead of his double world champion team mate at the end of his rookie year.

Name another world champion in the history of F1 to finish behind his rookie team mate at the end of the season.

Name another driver ever who attempted to blackmail his team with his own cheating.


The "great"Kimi was beaten BY MASSA.


Nick but you could also say Massa was unlucky at Malaysia he had a brain fade moment and spun off due to thinking traction control was still in F1, then at Hungary an easy win was lost due to an engine failure and then another easy win at singapore was ruined because of the Renault/Piquet stunt, all ifs and buts but on pace Massa was faster than Raikkonen more often than not, the only driver than can turn a hugely unlucky season around just like in 2010 is Vettel, he negates those DNF's and poor lucks and still wins the title, Kimi couldn't do that in 2005 and nor can Alonso or Hamilton, still I think we'll find out if Massa really was permanently damaged by his crash in 2009, overall Massa and Kimi was evenly matched.


Every driver has good years and bad years, whatever the reason is, but it is wise to remember what said Sergio Rinland about Kimi: “I looked in his eyes and I thought ‘I’ve seen

this look before. And I know where I saw that look before. And it gave

me goosebumps when I remembered that look. It was Senna.”


Always this rubbish that Massa 'outperformed' Kimi in 2008..

Ferrari developed the car towards Massa, and actually Kimi was amazingly still on the pace, even more towards the end of the season. He out paced Massa in fugi (could have won if Hamilton hadnt missed his breaking poin at the start and forced him off) and in shanghai, where he pulled over for Massa at the end.

On top of this:

Canada, looking good for the win until ham crashes into him in pits.

France, easy win until exhaust cracks, Massa wins.

Spa, passes Massa and Hamilton on track and would have won had it not rained. Massa inherites victory.

No one seems to remember this... Especially a lot of f1 journos

All this equates to 'massa outperforming raikkonen'.


With respect, pre and post 2009 Massa are vastly different drivers. Sadly.


Massa was a different driver back then.


Alonso and Hamilton both finished on 109 points.


Yes but not a double world champion!!!!!!


This image is a "must see" - courtesy @f1silverarrow. I think maria might like this one 🙂



Lewis won on countback, by virtue of more 2nd place finishes. The title has been decided by half a point (Lauda over Prost in 1984), so countback on even points is the only way that record is broken.

Lewis was a rookie! Both Dennis ("Lewis don't be surprised if you're 0.5s off [Alonso's] pace") and Alonso ("ok Ron you can name a rookie to the 2nd seat, but it could cost you the constructors title") never thought that Lewis would arrive on the scene with the impact that he had.


Yes, a rookie with a silver spoon in his mouth firmly placed there by none other than Ron Dennis, and some 12 years experience with McLaren before he took the grid. Hardly a rookie mate. Take a look at Webber's or Alonso's first year in Minardis, now they are rookie seasons...


Lewis was a rookie.


Haha have you seen the championship for the last 4 years? Doh

Matched points i believe. Dreamer


Same number of points but position wise Lewis finished higher.


Hopefully should inject a bit of spice into proceedings for next year. Vettel might be on for his 5th, but RBR won't manage the double again, I suspect.


You underestimate Ricciardo, he is super fast and will be a good points collector for RBR, it all now depends on the car and engine, if Ferrari and Rory Byrne comes out with a winning package then yes RBR will have work cut out for them, I doubt Ferrari will be as strong as Mercedes and even McLaren.


With a large formula change, there are opportunities, and Ferrari will have to deliver with the engine.

Can we say there is a Raikkonen-Allison synergy?What of Allison-Alonso?

What are the odds that Luca won't stop there?

How can Dommenicalli retain his job?

Could we se a triad reunion at Ferrari of Kimi-Allison-Boullier?

Of the best of the rest, Allison is clearly emerging as the contender in his area of expertise, this his chance to take down the champ!

Will Alonso stay?

I've been writing, frequently, that he would never go head-to-head in a fair fight against Kimi; he's a fighter, though.

Unfinished business! Back in Red!

The conquest is at hand.

I've watched, a bit in awe, as more and more legions of Kimi fans emerged.

Having been convinced, long ago, in Montreal, leading a living legend, in Red, on merit; just the best.

But there is really something going on.

There are a lot of people like me, who really think, not only is he the best racer, but he has the most integrity... is that it?

He has the most cool; what is that?

I remember Vettel, like gushing school girl on the podium; I mean, he can drive, but...

There is a new, fairly extreme phenomenon, here.

Is he the most popular driver?

I think he is.

Who was more popular:

- in this sport?

- in any sport?!?


Super clean driver too.


Funny, as I actually wonder if Mercedes will be as strong as Ferrari, or RBR.

I guess this is why we will actually have to run the GPs next year. 🙂


I hope competition in 2014 will be on level ground so that we can see more clearly the true performance of each driver. Some years we saw the championship was distorted by allowing some bending-the-rules innovations that gave some lucky teams the trophy.

As for Kimi, congratulations for going back to a well funded top team. I am sure he will make more effort to improve further his speed and will now make good use of simulators which he shunted when in Lotus, for example.


At last they do something good for the team. Slight message to Alonso as to who is the boss (Luca) but providing they can finally make a good car, this should be good. Alonso = awesome Kimi = awesome. Alonso to shade it overall, but what fun. As a Ferrari fan as long as it one of them who cares which


My feeling exactly



It could have been Kimi and Seb: DR MARKO, you will have to live with your choice.


Alonso/Hulk would not have hoped to be a match for Kimi/Vettel.

Alas, seems Marko and co really believed Kimi was staying with Lotus and Massa was staying as Alonso's helper.

Ah the lack of foresight !


You may be right. I think some senior RB people may have been caught off guard by this. Hence they hope Ferrari will "tear themselves apart".



What do you call doing the same thing and expecting a different result? Enough of this all about Alonso. He's had it his way for 4 years. Time to break-test Alonso! 🙂



F1 is a team effort. Ferrari have put it's trust, technical direction, type of car they build into Alonso's hands. They have put him as clear #1 and have stopped at nothing to make that clear. It has not paid off. Do you think that continuing with this direction is the right path? Or perhaps trying something different strategy wise is the way to go.

You claim that Alonso has not have had the car, but what do we say of Schumi? That he developed the car? Pulled the team up?

My point has nothing to do with my liking one driver or another. It has to do with the fact that the current Ferrari formula has been given 4 seasons and has not paid off in any really meaningful way. Time for Ferrari to try a new formula, and to put more internal competition between the two cars to deliver results. Also to see how good Alonso is. If he's really good, Kimi is not a problem.


Has he had a car to challenge the driver YOU happen to like? Nope. Hence Alonso has NOT had it his way... probably RBR and VET have.


This could be the best and most exciting aspect of next years racing. It could be the best and most exciting thing in F1 for a long while.

I am excited and can't wait for next year and I am a big Vettel fan.

Seeing not only Kimi and Alsonso racing each other but also the relationship they have. Will they fight. Will Alonso spit the dummy if things don't go his way.

It has been a while since Alonso has had a team mate that competes against him. For the last few years Alonso has not had a team mate but a wing man, that exists only to advance Alonso in the race or on grid positions. Alonso has become used to having extra race wins, extra points and better grid positions come his way each year gifted to him through his team mates sacrificing himself.

I think it is going to be quite a shock for Alonso because I don't think Kimmi will ever be as accommodating or self sacrificing as Massa even if he is contractually a number two driver.

I only hope that Ferrari let Kimmi race. I could not stand to see Kimmi moving over letting Alonso through, breaking a seal on this gear box to get Alonso further up the grid, towing Alonso etc etc etc. This would be specially painful to watch because it is Kimmi and he is kinda the anti this sort of rubbish behaviour.

Even if Ferrari don't win the WDC or WCC next year they will gain such popularity and kudos if they let Alonso and Kimmi go at it.


Kimi moved over for Massa at China 2008. So he has already done it.


What a load of tosh from Tealeaf!! Seb to wipe the floor with Kimi!!!!!!! are you having a laugh?? Do you even know how good Kimi is? At least Redbull knew how good Kimi is, which is why they didn't pair him with Seb, as the world knows that Kimi would expose Seb for what he really is 'a good driver in a great car'. Redbull also declined Lewis last year, I'm assuming because they know Seb would have been beaten by Lewis just like he would have been beaten by Kimi.


Guys, Massa had no chance to win the WDC when he moved over. Massa moved over three times for Alonso (whatever you think), two of them being way earlier than when Kimi and him moved for each other. The difference was the points gap between Alonso and Massa was much greater than that between Massa and Kimi, even if it was much earlier. Ferrari has not changed their approach since 2007-2008, what has changed is the relative competitiveness of their drivers, and having a much stronger rival on Red Bull-Vettel.

So hiring Kimi is not going to change anything in Ferrari's approach. Whoever does a better job on the track will get preferential treatment towards the end of the year. If the points gap between the two is very big halfway, and there is a rival running with it, they will do the same and tell one of their drivers to move over if necessary.


Good point about Webber, the multi 21 brigade funnily enough always fail to acknowledge Webber always publicly admits he wouldn't help Seb no matter what the situation, I for 1 am glad Seb stuck the car up the inside at turn 1 at Sepang and then made the move stick, showed that 'not bad for a number 2 driver' who the number 1 driver in the world was, after Brazil last year and the stuff he was saying to make the Oz crowd boo Vettel before multi 21 Webber needed to be put in his place and Seb did just that, whats the quali this year? 12-0? Wins? 6-0? Well if I was a Hamilton or Alonso fan I'd boo too everyone knows Seb would have wiped the floor with Kimi thats why they root for Ricciardo to join RBR to make it seem like Vettel is not all that great by not having the chance to blow a top 3 driver away, doesn't matter though if people were honest with themselves they all know whos the best.


Totally different. Kimmi had no chance to win the WDC at that point and so supported his team mate as most drivers would (not webber).


Made sense then, didn't it? Just as Felipe moved over for him at Brazil '08. Both drivers were out of the DWC, aiding their teammate who sitll had a chance.

Kimi and Fernando would do the same for the other if in the same situation.


There is another element as well, Kimi has a lot of friends in Maranello, he always got along well with the team and never had a bad word against them, even after being put in car built for Massa or the shove-out, his boys in the barn will welcome him back with open arms as the prodigal son. THIS will have a huge impact that i am not really hearing much about. The team will be gushing over the boy-returneth, and ALO will be left in the corner sulking, this is going to get good!


Imagine this happening next year:

Radio message from pit wall: Kimi, Alonso is faster than you.

Kimi: So what?

Pit wall: Do you understand? Alonso is faster than you!

Kimi: Don't disturb me when I'm driving.


U underestimate KR




At last they do something good for the team. Slight message to Alonso as to who is the boss (Luca) but providing they can finally make a good car, this should be good. Alonso = awesome Kimi = awesome. Alonso to shade it overall, but what fun. As a Ferrari fan as long as it one of them who cares which


emmm..nothing slight about this message.. Its a kick up the rear of 'samurai' to stop being a brat.

Good car or not, Nando- Kimi are going to be awesome to watch 🙂


This whole situation is crazy. I didn't watch a single race while Kimi was out of F1. I remember a reader on this site claiming (quite vociferously) that I'd never keep my boycott up, but I just lost all enthusiasm for the sport without Kimi's...je ne sais quoi. I remember James Allen commenting that I was missing some really good racing, and perhaps he (you!) was right.

But I'd been a fan of Kimi since his 6th position finish in a Sauber at Melbourne when I was just 16 years old. His nonchalance fits my ideal for what I want to see in a sportsman (very personal, subjective opinion, I know, but there you go).

When he left the sport in 2009 I honestly thought that was it...I saw his "last victory" live at Spa and thought that was it. To see his two pretty damn good years at Lotus has been amazing...BUT NOW he is definitely going back to Ferrari!

Holy Moly!

Let's just hope that the 2014 Ferrari suits his driving style. I don't care what anyone says, you can't go from a perfect weekend (fastest practice, qualiying and race lap times plus victory) in Spain 2008 and then fade so badly through a season without something quite drastic being changed in the car ("lack of motivation"? Whatever!). His crash in qualifying at Monaco in 2008 was just so uncharacteristic and looked like a driver desperately trying to make sense of a car that seemed to have changed over-night. I never understood why Ferrari did this having had so much success with Kimi in 2007...

The end of the season in 2009 (including the win at Spa) showed what Kimi and Ferrari can do when they work in tandem...let's just hope that they can find this way of working together again with Alonso on the other side of the garage.

Who would have guessed, back in 2005, that these two would be team-mates at Ferrari in 2014...mental. When Kimi's tyre blew-up at the Nurburgring in 2005 and Alonso celebrated that inherited victory as though he'd just invented a cure for cancer I really struggled to find much to like about him. But, despite what happened in 2007, I think Alonso has calmed down somewhat. Yes, they'll push one another and wont work as a team in any way. But I actually think that this combined force of great drivers will be the best way to take the fight to Red Bull...

Good decision, Ferrari.



I don't understand how this article is always thrown around as if it is fact? A lot of clutching at straws in there. This one stood out.

"Santander have said the major condition of their deal is that former World Champion Fernando Alonso would drive for the team. He won’t confirm his future, and will not comment until September."

September obviously being the date of Monza where Ferrari seem to always announce their driver line-ups. As they have just done now.

Everyone pointing to Kimi's bad luck forgetting that pretty much everyone did in a really weird season. Massa would have got far more points if his car didn't blow in Hungary, Renault didn't cheat in Singapore, Lewis didn't bring out a safety car in Monaco etc.


I don't threw it as a fact, I just think the article raises some valid points. I'm absolutely no expert and I'm not telling that article is the bible about Kimi and Ferrari.


There are a couple of factual errors I know about in the opening section, so one cannot be sure what is true and what is fiction


Haha...already a step ahead of you. I knew Soren (the author) before he even started writing that blog... He's a proper Kimi fan too 🙂


Boo-yah bitches! I'm here. 😀

Kimi? Nah, he ain't that special.. 😉

Up for a race visit next year, Charlie?

I just updated the prologue of the article by the way. In light of the recent events.

Props to James Allen for a good rundown in this piece.


Wow, I'm quite stunned by your stance.

Sure I have preferences for certain drivers, But if all of them were replaced next week, I'd still watch.


Yeah, I don't know what went wrong with me. Before Kimi I could watch any race and generally just supported the underdog to liven up the championship. But Kimi changed things. I've explained a bit more in my reply to Tom above 🙂


Hmm... Now you made me feel bad about watching F1 during those 2 years. 🙂

I'm a huge Kimi fan as well (and Häkkinen before him) and never supported any other driver during 2010/2011. But I couldn't really stop watching F1. But it really was not the same for me without the iceman. (Same goes for MotoGP, I'm still watching it but not supporting any rider after Simoncelli)

Hope Ferrari will build a decent car for 2014. For me, this is the best driver pairing since Senna/Prost


Looks like we share the same view of the world. I was very much Hakkinen then Raikkonen!

I was just so broken-hearted when Kimi left in 2009 that I found no enjoyment in watching a load of drivers that I just didn't particularly like as sporting personalities. There are very VERY few sportsmen in the world like Kimi Raikkonen. Ultimately I think the attraction is the fact that if I was that famous as as sportsman I'd probably end up much more like Alonso (passionate, emotional, competitive...almost aggressively so...etc) and really I'd have more respect for myself if I were like Kimi (phlegmatic, nonchalant...badass). That's what it comes down to...simple competitive apathy.

There's a scene in the TV show Scrubs in which a character, who looks a little lazy and out of shape, competes in a hurdle race with about 50% effort, wins, says "good race" to the others who are all out of breath, and then puts a cigarette in his mouth that he'd had behind his ear during the race. It's the sort of thing James Hunt would have done, and it reminds me of Kimi's general attitude towards life.

Basically he's awesome.


Ding wamage...nice. Couldn't agree more 😉


Have you considered the possibility that Kimi is actually the only honest one of the lot? The rest are probably just putting on all this 'great athlete', 'hard work', 'complete devotion' and even 'samurai warfare' bovine excrement?

I like it that he exposes the rest as try-hards and PR puppets.


Wow! +1 000 000. And he is very smart too! No need forget that. At least people, who worked with him, have that kind of opinion.

Yes, it looks like everything coming very easy but reality is, that he works very hard.


That goes for me as well. I have been following f1 since the early 80's and have barely missed watching a race since Schumacher's Benetton days. I became a fan of Kimi during his first year with Sauber and even more so when he moved to McLaren. I cannot say I was thrilled when Kime left Woking for Maranello, but the disappointment when he was ousted from Ferrari made me lose all interest in f1. I, who had followed f1 on a daily basis for years, did not watch one race until Kimi came back with Lotus. I would love having Kimi back at McLaren, but Kimi in whatever somewhat competitive car is worth watching.


Yep - we share pretty much identical views. Before Kimi came to the sport I could quite happily watch any race, normally hoping the underdog would win...but as soon as Kimi entered the sport my whole attitude changed. I think it's because there is something predictably unpredictable in the whole viewing experience when you're a Raikkonen fan. We know (us KR fans) that he IS the fastest driver in the world...with a few conditions. And that's the problem. While we loved 2005, since he was just unstoppable when his car worked, we struggled in 2008 because he just couldn't qualify the bloody thing after the fly-away season ended (Spain excluded). Let's not forget that he still got the record for the most fastest laps in a season in 2008 (shared with MSC...and himself).

There's kind of blind belief that he'll always bring the most out of the car on race day. Even in his weakest seasons (08-09) he was still pretty good on race day.

So, what will happen with Alonso? Who knows. But I still back Cap'n Kimbo to be pretty ace whatever happens. I have blind faith 🙂


Great to see equally crazy Kimi fans. F1 was just not the same without him.


"Let’s just hope that the 2014 Ferrari suits his driving style".

Come on!!!! Too early for excuses.


Same here, even I stopped watching F1 in 2010/2011. Good to know there are few more like minded people out there!


We should start a support group for when he finally retires... 😉


Alonso has been the main beneficiary whenever a front running car failed for the past few years. And many times he has celebrated that.

You would have seen the photo here on JA on F1 where he was raising his hand when they were towing Vettel's car away. That is the reason this man is not winning the Championship any more. You need a good heart to win.


Uh, that pic was from the 2012 Italian GP, when Alonso finished 3rd, and when Vettel retired from that race, Alonso was already ahead of him.


My point is, he is raising his hand. (That is not to indicate he is aware of marshals on the track).


No im always David C. My point is that NR spent alot more time in fuel saving mode during the race and that is why he was in better shape late in the race, he had saved fuel and as such had an advantage. So are you now going to say that MW was wrong to attack SV in the 2011 Brittish GP?? Its a shame he wasnt good enough to pull it off but he was told not to attack and did and I thought fare play to him. LH felt he had done wrong after the race and wasnt celebrating was he?

About the engines, it might be interesting but we dont know so thats irrelevent. If you have proof thats the case and proof that the failure was caused by running the engine too hard fare enough but you dont so irrelevent.

Anyway the comment I replied to said that it was good for SV but one thing is for sure NR is more accomidating to LH than MW is to SV. MW would have passed SV in that race as proven by the brittish GP in 2011


I know. I was slightly ashamed of myself for being happy when Kimi won in Abu Dhabi. After all that was Hamilton's race to lose.

In fact, Hamilton's missed out on a few races from technical failures while in the lead - but then so has Vettel. I empathise...

Kimi in France 2008 (Massa celebrated that victory as though he deserved it)...

Kimi in Canada 2005 (Alonso wins...)

Kimi in Germany 2005 (Alonso wins...)

Kimi in San Marino 2005 (Guess who...Alonso wins...)

You could say that Kimi was unlucky in 2005...

Also, I think Kimi would have won in Canada 2008 if Hamilton hadn't parked his car in the back of his Ferrari (a view shared by James Allen I believe). I think he might have won in 2006 at Hungary too if it wasn't for Tonio Liuzzi slowing down on the racing line...Nurburgring 2003...I can go on....

Obviously I am slightly appeased by the fact that Kimi won in Spa in 2004 after an Alonso failure...but it seems as though justice has not been evenly distributed.



Thanks Andrew and unF1nnished business, quite right - Hockenheim, not Canada. Don't know what I was thinking!


remember fisi won brazilian gp '04 due to FA ignore yellow flag.


Kimi did win in Canada 2005...

unF1nnished business

Kimi won in Canada in '05. I believe you're referring to Nurburgring or Hockenheim in '05. Both races DNFing while in the lead.


Well, if Fisichella had KERS that day in 2009, Raikkonen would have had no chance of winning...


Worth remembering too that when Fisi was drafted in to Ferrari straight afterwards, he couldn't make head or tail of the car. It's true that Fisi's career fizzled (Fissled ?) out a bit at the end, but there was a time when he was very highly regarded. The 2009 Ferrari was a bit of a dog ...


In 2008 Ferrari was made to support Massa for the title by the huge sponsors that he brought in from S. America.


Michael Schumacher was the catalyst for helping Ferrari set up the car for Felipe Massas preference.He was contracted by Ferrari in 2008- Is it no coincidence that the team went downhill very quickly after loosing Todt / Brawn also. MS felt he owed FM for all his loyalty and I would only suggest he could not stand the fact that Kimi was WDC in his first year at Ferrari he knew his records at Ferrari would come under threat!..


Please share with the world exactly which sponsor you speak of... Seeing as Marlboro were the main sponsor in 2008, in fact they had been since 1997.

Schumacher guided development of the team towards Massa, that is the only reason



Ok Spanish not S. American.

The result though is the same


Santander is a SPANISH bank.



Do you think major multi tens of million dollar sponsorship deals get signed & sealed in a matter of weeks? Especially as cigarette sponsors were being kicked out of the sport.


Have to say I'm with you on this...but I like the blind enthusiasm...!


Congratulation on being a loyal fan.

I do feel that Kimi will be beated by FA at the end of the day. However, it will be an electric season. Bring it on, 2014.


Funny that Kimi's 2007 WDC is thanks to Alonso's McLaren melt-down. Alonso sure has a lot to make up for, but that self induced pressure is going to be fascinating to watch.

I was interested by the Nico/Lewis pairing in 2013, nothing will be watched closer than the Alonso/Kimi pairing in 2014. Bring on the drama!


@Sebee: Spot on! Had ALO qualified and raced as well as MAS at the end of 2012, he would have won WDC.

This ALO praise has gone too far. Ferrari has been fairly competitive last years, RBR/VET duo just worked better than Ferrari/ALO. Team AND _driver_ counts.


F1 is a team effort Erik. It is not as simple as saying that it's all car, because then you also take away from Alonso and his contribution. The blame doesn't lie in a single area.

You say Ferrari haven't given Alonso the car to win, I say Alonso has gotten the restuls last 4 season thanks to the car. You say Alonso is the reason why Ferrari were a contender, I say Ferrari are the reason why Alonso was a contender.

It's not a black and white scenario. It's a team effort Erik. They need to up their game in all areas, and this includes Alonso. I find it highly disturbing that end of 2012 in a cluch situation Alonso was beaten not only by Vettel, but also by Massa.


Sebee and Erik:

Interesting points.

Has Hamilton eclipsed Rosberg yet, in your mind?

Yes, Ferrari, like all of the teams/drivers, except Sebastian Vettel, are frutrated by the Vettel-Red Bull dominance in package/pace; however you look at it, the package is good, and every bit earned their WCs (should have got 2009 as well).

So Ferrari,... is obviously Ferrari, and they definitely are trying to make the fastest car; so why criticize the way Alonso did?

Valueless, as a matter of fact, dismising all of the hard work!

Ironically, despite the seeming disrespctful treatment towards Kimi, he maintained his integrity and never criticized Ferrari; while Alonoso, never having been in the least bit slighted, enjoying clear pre-emininance within the team, criticizes harshly.


If they get equal treatment, Iexpect Kimi to have the upper hand.

I don't expect equal treatment.

Who will be the Ferrari team principle for 2014?

That's what I want to know now.

We won't get an answer before the end of this season, however.


Alonso has a lot to make up for? How do you figure? If anything it's Ferrari who needs to lift it's game making a good car. Don't forget that Raikkonen is leaving a team that has not paid him and is looking like it's in ever greater financial trouble. And is going to a team that has not made a great car for a few years. Kimi in not stupid, he knows just as well as Alonso that next year will be tense, so it says a lot about what he thinks of Lotus to go to Ferrari despite this. To me this fact puts into context how little influence Alonso had in making this second driver decision. Which as a former number one driver (now probably equal number one), says that there is indeed tension there. For me this driver pairing is immense - my favourite two drivers in one team. But when a world champion tells you to improve the car because it's crap, Ferrari should respond with making a better car instead of playing political games with it's own drivers. So for me it's Ferrari that needs to prove themselves, not Alonso.


Thanks Joel. I've said in a post elsewhere on this article that Kimi being beaten by Alonso depends on the car and Ferrari's desire to develop it to fit Kimi's driving style... We'll see.


I didnt watch a single Formula One race either whilst Kimi was Rallying. Raikkonen's 1st Formula One race in '01 was my 1st F1 race as a viewer and I was 12 years old back then and in sport you have to root for someone right, and I rooted for the debutant. Never been the same again 🙂


There are a few of us out there! That was basically the race at which I started watching every race. I'd supported Hakkinen before that and Mansel for a bit when I was a real kid. But I never watched every race until Kimi joined the sport (after only 23 competitive car races!!! - what a legend!)

It's nice to meet long-term Raikkonen fans who understand stuff like crying at the end of Nurburgring 2005 or simply not understanding qualifying lap times such as Monaco 2005. He ended Montoya's career. How many drivers have done that to such a highly rated team-mate?


I'm older and watched F1 for many years since early-mid 80's Prost/ Senna.. But it's funny you mentioned it- when Kimi came along and those early Sauber tests- I started watching regularly--I really didn't know why but I think Kimis start in F1 - was the tipping point. Thanks


Kimi...what a badass. My favourite driver ever.

I really hope the car suits him. Either way - I think it'll be a great combination, regardless of the potential team-mate fireworks.

This is massive...MASSIVE!!!


Badass indeed, go Iceman 🙂


Badass indeed, go Iceman 🙂


+1 what a badass


Lewis agrees with you. This is massive. 🙂


On many levels...didn't Lewis use to play F1 games as Kimi 😉


Can’t wait to see Alonso’s reaction when kimi beats him. How long will it be before he says “I feel alone in this team.” To be honest I still think Alonso will come out on top but it’ll be close.

I hope Hulk gets kimi’s seat at lotus, his talent has been waited for too long now.


oops I meant wasted not waited


Won't take long. And all the Alonso fans will come out of the wood works to whine about it along with the Spanish press. The best part would be that no one will give a dime. lol


@Maria, that is probably inevitable But

No one seems to have mentioned the real difference in this new situation. This will be the first time in his career that ALO has a team mate he RESPECTS.

2007 he was paired with a rookie and he expected the team to acknowledge his own status as defending champ. Not unreasonable, but I think he learned from that.

ALO is a very smart chap. He will know how to deal with KR.

He will know there is only one way : beat Kimi every qualy and every race. This battle can only be won on the track. Political shennanigans and threats will cut no ice with Kimi.


I wonder if maria is an Alonso fan like Rob Newman..


Even I thought about that 🙂



Yes, we all know that if Kimi starts to beat him on the track Alonso will spit out his dummy.

Just wait for all his fans to start concocting fanciful links to McLaren's spygate...Pat Fry gets his revenge on poor old Alonso at Ferrari etc! 😀

This is going to be SO entertaining, great move Ferrari!


I think you could be right, this is great from afar as a nonFerrari fan, but I cant see how this will work, if they build a great car, your going to have 2 alpha dogs just going at each other causing all sorts of hassle , on the other side of the coin,, if the cars a dog 2 drivers who will have the hump with Ferrari, but its going to be fun


Bring on 2014 wow what a year it will be watching these two amazing drivers battle for top honours.


Great news isn't it! If VET runs away with it again at least this should prove a year long talking point.

I find it interesting that Ferrari have put together this dream team and will be the ones providing a good chunk of the excitmenet and discussion next year. RBR had the opportunity to do the same, in keeping with their brand image, and failed to do so. Nothing about the way RBR runs the team is in keeping with the brand image though is it?

Again RBR not taking RAI will come off as VET being protected from all challengers (and it makes sense for RBR to do that but not on a fan-base, image level).

I've really warmed to Ferrari over the past 5 or so years while I find nothing to like about RBR at all (now that WEB will be leaving).


Not sure RBR have much time to spend trying to figure out ways to add to the excitement of F1. They're too busy building trophy cases.


Yes, but their brand image is better served by going for a 5th straight constructor's and driver's championship next year than making sure that bored F1 fans can debate which of their two drivers is better.


If you don't think they spend time thinking about their brand image (which is what I was clearly talking about) you might want to think again.


I think RB management feel a bit caught out with this. No one there expects Kimi and Alonso to gel. Hence the "Ferrari could be a very strong challenger or they could tear apart" comment by RB." I think RB management are hoping it's the latter so that they keep their jobs.

I was wrong too - I completely ruled out Kimi returning to a team that early terminated his services.

2014 is looking very fascinating.


I suspect you are a Liverpool fan, James. And so you are probably worried about how Sturridge will react to the return of Suarez for your beloved Reds. That sums up my concern for Fernando "family-man" Alonso. As I recall he did not handle the last sibling rivalry too well at McLaren ... Fingers crossed the car is good enough to make this irrelevant.


"he did not handle the last sibling rivalry too well at McLaren".

Of course, not. Sometimes in Q3, he was fighting against LEW with tyre pressures way below the specs.

In Brazil, FIA had stewards checking ALO's car to make sure McLaren not tampered anything.

Ron Dennis saying: "We are basically racing Fernando".




You reap what you sow 🙂


where is the evidence for that??? i mean alonso isnt known now to be quick in quali & still gets out paced by a has been massa & he has the run of the team-i guss ferrari are tampering too:-D


And where is the evidence for the fifty accusations a day made against Alonso on this and other sites?

Ron gave the game away with his stupid radio comment. And just ask David Coulthard about how McLaren managed their drivers back then. There is a reason Coulthard is very generous to Alonso, especially on that specific subject.


Sorry. Just FACTS.


Sturbridge is a fine prospect but he is not yet the equivalent of Alonso..


Off topic, James, but what did you think of the NASCAR 'crashgate' at the weekend compared to F1? Do you think they are being overly relaxed and F1 were correct in deeling with it, or were F1 over the top and NASCAR are doing it correctly?


The NASCAR reaction though extended to potentially penalizing ANYONE who gained from Bowyer's spin. That's like going through the Singapore GP and penalizing everybody who gained places "potentially" from Piquet's stunt.

The "danger" issue is always a non-issue in NASCAR. No matter how many drivers die they only make marginal changes to the format. Bumping and Crashing deliberately are still legal moves.


@NJ, I'm thinking more about the histrionics, the danger of injury or death to other drivers and marshals was the main moral, if not legal, charge against Flavio and Renault (in the media anyway), plus the attempt at lifetime bans, and the team was (is?) on probation, with the threat of expulsion from the sport.

The NASCAR one is more framed around the sporting issue, i.e. accusations of cheating. (I believe that teammates in F1 would be allowed to slow down, or even retire, to get a championship advantage, as team orders are allowed.)


Sorry.. that's MWR driver Clint Bowyer.. not RCR drivers



I think NASCAR is reacting more than F1 did. So many penalties, bans... even penalties for drivers not involved at all with the actual spin.

Very bizarre result actually when the discussion originally only involved RCR drivers.


Off topic!! 😀


Sturridge is no Suarez and this form is temporary, the cream always rise to the top at the end, and the equivalent to Alonso in world football is Cristiano Ronaldo.


Do y'mean that he has great ability, but that he hasn't garnered the number of titles proportionate to that ability?


Agree with you. The cream rose to the top in 2010 and still there.


Kimi to Ferrari, Hulk to Lotus, Massa to Sauber? Or is Massa's time done now?


I'm sure he'd love to go back to Sauber and they'd be lucky to have his experience given the rules change and having a total teenage rookie in the other seat - sadly for Massa he isn't a pay driver and I doubt Sauber can cough up even his reduced demands.

I would love to see Massa continue away from the obviously soul crushing expectation to move over for alpha-male Alonso, but sadly I think he's in that weird bracket where he's no longer wanted at the very top teams, but he's too experienced and talented to take a pay seat on one of the struggling teams.

Given he's not even as old as Webber, he's got a long career ahead of him in another race formula. I just think F1 is saying goodbye now.


Thats the constructor's sewn up for Ferrari in 2014 provided a half decent car.

Excited at the prospect of seeing one Ferrari chasing the other throughout the season. Hoping for Vettel to be a bit more frustrated at the competitiveness of Ricciardo and the two Ferraris in general. Hoping it brings out the best (or worst) in everybody.

Hoping for an awesome season ahead.

Raikkonen and Alonso

Vettel and Ricciardo

Hamilton and Rosberg

Perez and Button

Grosjean and Hulkenberg

Maldonado and Bottas

It should be good. Lets get this season over and done with quickly!


McLaren, again, find themselves with the weakest driver pairing of the 'top' teams. I'd even say Lotus will have a better line-up.

Tornillo Amarillo

Checo will be Champion in 2015. I guess.


Instead of working on strengthening his own driver lineup, Whitmarsh was busy speculating that Kimi won't be able to move from Lotus.

Even last year, in a bid to one up Hamilton, he went out and signed Perez, when the smart thing would have been to take time and weigh all options.

Hulk would be much better.


Agree. McLaren seem to have played the driver market poorly compared to RB, Merc and Ferrari.

Unless McLaren haven't played their 2014 hand yet - Alonso back at McLaren!

I would have laughed that off - but with the Kimi Ferrari return, I realize it's me who has been too closed minded to the possibilities.

It makes no sense to pour so much resources and money building a good car unless the team has competitive drivers. Button is good but even he would admit he won the WDC because he had a double diffuser and the competition didn't. Perez is proving to be a Button thereabouts.

I think McLaren really need an Alonso.


Nah, Grosjean still needs to show he's a winner in a car that has won. Hulkenberg too. Though he's probably going to beat Grosjean most of the time. You can dislike Button all you want but dismissing his ability to win is just going against the facts. He may not be in the top 3 tier, but he's a WDC who can race very well (But qualifies fairly poorly - much like Raikonnen now and increasingly, it seems, Alonso).


They should sack the hype bogus train Perez and hire the Hulk



Please excuse my ignorance - what's a hype bogus train?


While reeling from the shock that Lewis had decided to leave MacLaren after all, last year, when Perez' name was mentioned as the replacement, the first thought in my head was "giant killer'.

From the podiums that Sergio achieved last year, I certainly thought he was the perfect replacement, and the only negative clue at the time was Ferarri saying he was too inexperienced.

Hard for me to judge his results this year, when on at least two occasions, he has been told by the team not to pass Jenson.

Last year, I couldn't really see what the Hulkenberg fuss was about; he and Di Resta seemed pretty close to each other's perfomances over the season.


'Bogus train Perez' ... :).. can't stop laughing


Perez brings Telmex money and Telmex money is badly needed now as they've lost Vodafone as their main sponsor and they've lost the Mercedes works team status, so they need to pay the engines until 2015 when Honda comes in. But Perez has raised his game in the last races and we know from his Sauber days, that he is able to perform very well given the situation suits his style, so he's very good value for the money. I doubt McLaren could be happier with any other driver right at the moment.




Correct. And like some of the other teams, they should have looked into the future and maybe this was the time for Button's Mclaren tenure to end. They've opted for continuity; will have to dish out a really good car..


Prost, Kimi, Fernando and Lewis have all left McLaren. Maybe it's not the drivers but McLaren that make mistakes.


And Senna...


This will be a real powerhouse of a team and the tide is going to get rough for Alonso who was clearly brought in with a mandate to recreate the magic of the dominant Schumacher + Ferrari era. Definitely see power/ ego struggles in the season ahead for the Alonso Raikkonen combine though it will make some very exciting viewing for a Ferrari fan!


Oh my science, this is absolutely huge, but I guess expected by now. The pressure is really on Ricciardo now.

Tornillo Amarillo

The pressure in each driver, they have now 1 or 2 years only to convince the team for keeping a seat. There are many fast drivers everywhere...


The pressure is on Vettel. He is the one who will have to deal with 2 Ferrari and 2 Mercedes drivers all by himself. I hope I´m wrong but I don´t see Ricciardo challenging anyone. I mean I don´t see Ricciardo not even beating Rosberg much less any of the other top drivers.


Thats the opposite of pressure - if Vettels car is good enough then the other teams will take points off eachother while he is always say 4th at worst - a lot like in 2012. Advantage Vettel - infact I'd say Big Advantage Vettel for 2014.


Spot on. Management at RB who were caught by surprise will pray that Ferrari "tear each other apart" and put lots of pressure on Ricciardo, to justify their decision.

If RB doesn't win WCC, their pointer finger will be pointed at Ricciardo (with their middle, ring and little finger pointing back at themselves!).

Of course if Ricciardo does well and RB cruises to 1-2 finishes and both championships - RB will be seen as geniuses!


Just imagine if Ferrari get the car wrong though.


Agree, he has to do his best to pair Vettel and scores all points he can, if he don't deliver Red Bull will eat his shoes as they had the first chance to get Kimi, but I think he will do a good job, if the Red Bull is as good as today it won't be a problem but if Ferrari is closer or better...


That's a very good point actually - Perez at McLaren got the grace period of a few years to catch up to Jenson, they more or less said they didn't expect him to do well yet. Ricciardo will be fighting for the constructors championship and having to at least match Webber, if not vastly outpeform his countrymate to ensure they get the points tally...

Could RBR, in trying to protect their prized WDC asset have impacted their WCC chances? Interesting thought...



Hadn't thought about that...


What's the most likely scenario for Massa, then? Leave F1? I can see Hulk all setup for Lotus, according to most analysts.


Wouldn't it be good if Ferrari produce sh*t car next year, Massa goes to Lotus, who make a good one, and kicks their collective arses


Well, we can dream can't we? 😉


Hi James

Do you have any news on whether Rob Smedley will leave with Felipe or stay on to engineer Kimi? Can't see Kimi responding to "driver coaching" without a few expletives!



Kimi Baby, be cool! We're bringing you the vanilla ice cream!


There are no marks yet, but I hope that Mark Slade come with Kimi.


It makes laugh, engineers that coach their driver number exactly one. You don't honestly think Kimi or Alonso fall in that bracket do you.

Apart from any other reason, this was the main one for getting rid of him, he made Ferrari look like a comedy finishing school for drivers!


I would expected that Rob Smedley would be promoted to another role within Ferrari. I think he has done a great job with Massa and this has been appreciated by Ferrari. Massa moving on now means that Rob can move to a new role.


C'mon Kimi-baby, there's an ice-cream van round the next corner...


Happy for Hulk and Kimi. Hopefully in 2014, Lotus car will be good for Hulk and Ferrari car for Kimi. Kimi definitely is worth more than a single race victory per season (2012 and YTD) and a good Ferrari car will make him realize that. A couple of years for Hulk in Lotus and he will move to a bigger team when Kimi/Button retires (or even Alonso).

I have watched F1 for last 15 years and I think this is the best pairing I've ever seen. Hamilton-Alonso in 2007 turned out to be good in hindsight, but it was not thought to be so in the beginning of the season. Button-Hamilton is not as good as Alonso-Raikkonen. So this is a super-team in more than a decade at least. WDC challengers in 2005, 2007, 2012 and 2013 are getting paired up!


Add 2003 to that 🙂


I don't think Alonso was in contention in 2003. It was Montoya, Kimi and Schumi.


Alonso "Hey Kimi this is the Ferrrari Factory"

Kimi "Yes yes yes leave me alone I know what I'm doing"

Sorry couldnt resist....

Great news for the show that is F1 - will be extremely interesting to see how this pans out with two former world champions that are equally capable of becoming world champion again.


Alonso “Hey Kimi this is the Ferrrari Factory”

~Kimi silently points at his WDC plaque~





Alonso “Hey Kimi this is the Ferrrari Factory”

~Kimi silently points at his WDC plaque~

~Alonso then lifts both his WDC trophies in his hand~


Haha. Good one!


Alonso “Hey Kimi this is the Ferrrari Factory”

Kimi: "Yup, been there, seen there before you dude")))


Alonso “Hey Kimi this is the Ferrrari Factory”

Kimi: “Yup, been WDC there!!!"



I could not be more pleased. Having these two in a team together is going to create fireworks and excitement. The "lead driver" scenario has grown tiresome, in any and all teams. To see these two race equal machinery will be spectacular.


Super. This should have happened in 2010, but must appreciate Ferrari for their loyalty to Massa in the aftermath of Hungary 2009.

Massa has been a good driver for Ferrari and been very dignified all through these years.

Bring on 2014 !

Now if Only Vettel & Hamilton can form another super team .....


I think this is a win-win situation for Ferrari and Raikkonen: Ahead of a major regulation change, the "safe bet" is always with the team that has the highest budget, so even if the current cars are quite well matched, Raikkonen has a better chance to be competitive in a 2014 Ferrari than a 2014 Lotus.

For Ferrari, this means they have now two experienced drivers. If their car is good, but one of the drivers wants out, they can always sign Vettel for 2015/2016.


very well said... I too think this is the ideal year...

Alexander Supertramp

Vettel/Hamilton at Mercedes in 2015. Let's start the campaign!


Vettel will come to Ferrari.. don't worry about that


But can they afford him?

He will be at least a 4 times world champion, maybe even 5+. This will make him very expensive for any team to lure him away.

I know Ferrari have had the cash in the past to make big deals, like their current one with Alonso - but will they be in the same position financially in 2015 when the deal will have to be done?


Yes, Vettel with Kimi. Alonso will move on before that happens. Did anyone notice Briatore's scary face in TV at Monza? I think he has just learned Kimi is coming to Ferrari and is threat to his golden boy. Remember, Briatore was only team leader against Kimi's super license at the time and he's always been negative towards Kimi. Why do you think that is?


yes two years. 2014 & 2015. Kimi's contract could always be terminated early again....


Timing lines up for one seat. Not sure Vettel will try to take it until the other seat is occupied at least till 2016 by Fernando.


Isn't kimi s contact for two years? So till 2016?


... and Montezemolo rates Vettel highly and said only positive things about him. Vettel would love to go there at a certain point. Things fall into place. A perfect marriage.


Timing lines up

Vettel contract is to the end of 2015


I also like the idea of Vettel going to Mercedes to team up with Hamilton.


At Spa VET and HAM were chatting pretty good and Lewis' recent comments about VET were way positive so who knows me may see Mercedes become another super team in 2015


Hamilton's contract also expires at the end of 2015, so how about this scenario: they both move to McLaren-Honda for 2016? They would really be the re-incarnation of Senna and Prost at McLaren-Honda back in 1988. Classic!


The way Brawn and Lauda have been talking about Vettel lately, it is clear that they'd like to have him in their car. For their sponsor, Mercedes, having the German world champion race for them would be a dream.

Neither Nico Rosberg nor Lewis Hamilton are near retirement age though, and an unfriendly departure of Nico would not be in Mercedes' interest. If the Mercedes car is competitive, neither of them will want to leave, but if it isn't, Vettel won't want to join - difficult to see a way out. For that reason, I think a move of Vettel to Ferrari is more likely, but if an opportunity presents itself at Mercedes, I would not rule it our.

Vettel could certainly seek assurances about investment in the team, and if Mercedes are willing to spend on who will highest earning driver, they'll make sure he also gets a competitive car.

If Red Bull are as good next year as they are this year, there is no need for Vettel to move (and it was smart to stick with RB for 2013, as no team was likely to catch them under current regulations, while a move for 2015 before the effect of the new rules is known would have been premature). However, if Mercedes and / or Ferrari are at least equal to RB in 2014, I predict that Vettel will take his services elsewhere.


Lol not in a million years, Seb would rather take a seat at Ferrari and emulate Schumi than join Brackley, a very inconsistent team, maybe Kimi and Fernando will fade and Vettel and Hamilton replace them, certainly faster drivers the Vettel/Hamilton pairing but maybe not quite as calculating as Alonso/Raikkonen, certainly younger though..


Any inside information on what made the deal happen? Did Allison lure Kimi back to Ferrari, or inform him that next year's Ferrari might be a good challenger? Is Mark Slade going follow Kimi to Ferrari?

We will be treated with some great racing for the next couple of seasons!


Yes James Allison vauched for Kimi. See the autosport article here: http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/109817




On the open radio:

"Kimi, Fernando is faster than you."

"Tell him to wait his turn! I'm driving, don't disturb me!"

I suppose part of Kimi's contract contains a clause for a large supply of Coke and ice cream for after race refreshment?

Kimi back wearing red, who would have thought?


isn't that mid-race refreshment!? especially if it's a bit damp..!


In an scenery where Massa gets the Sauber seat:

Stefano: Fernando, Felipe is faster than you

Alonso: What? Do you mean Kimi?

Stefano: No you genius, Kimi is ahead of you, Felipe in the Sauber is faster, we want you to push!

Alonso: Mamma mia!


"Kimi, Fernando is faster than your"

"Tell him I'll take my foot off the brake when I'm ready"


Martin Brundle nailed this one:

"Kimi, Fernando is faster than you"

"Then why isn't he in front of me on the track"


This is great for Ferrari... and Alonso. Maybe he doesnt like this now, but personally I think he is going to beat Kimi and not by a small margin, and when he does, people (ALL the people) is going to have to admit how immensely good Alonso is.


I think it will also give Vettel pause for thought too. The focus on who is better than who at Ferrari will be so great that people might dismiss Vettel, no matter what he does.

As a Ferrari fan, a fan of these two drivers, and F1, I am so glad they made this move... so much so I just want 2013 to be over and start 2014 now!





Kimi & Alonso taking points from each other. Vettel getting crowned for 5th Time. Ferrari getting Constructor (if there is no spygate2)


This pair could possibly be a Hamilton/button pairing. Each taking point of each other while Vettel and Hamilton are 1,2 in the drivers championship. Riccardo needs to finish 5th (minimum) to let RB get the double and let the rest fight it out amongst themselves. I can't see Alonso or Kimi been an "after you, no after you" type driver.


And both can take points away from Vettel if they win the races. Oh! We could add Hamilton to the mix as well.


All depends on the car and the assistance given to each driver by the team. Think back to 2005 when Montoya (who was rapid in a Williams) just couldn't deal with the oversteer in the Mclaren. He said in a very candid interview with F1 Racing Magazine that he simply didn't understand how Kimi did it.

No doubt Alonso is good, but Kimi is potentially faster...potentially. Still, Kimi hasn't been in a car that he can regularly qualify at the front of the grid since the 2007 regulations. 2008 became about wringing the neck of the car in qualifying (hence Massa and Hamilton did well) and then following the car in front home in a procession.

After the "steering issues" Kimi said he was having in the Lotus last year were sorted out mid-season he began to regularly outqualify Grosjean.

The point is, if the car's right, Kimi is an absolute master in it. If not, then not so much (until race day when he tends to find a sweet spot over long runs). Alonso is the most malleable driver on the grid, so the advantage is with him. But I can't imagine Kimi signing for Ferrari (and leaving a team in which he had "artistic control" so to speak) without assurances that Ferrari will try and build a car to his liking.

Whatever the change was to the car in 2008, it ruined Kimi's season (and his career to some extent). Conspiracy theorists believe that the Ferrari team began to undermine Kimi via the way they developed the car knowing that Santander was coming in. This is perhaps a bit far fetched...

Regardless, the way the car was developed played to Massa's strengths, not Kimi's (the exact opposite of what's happened with Kimi and Grosjean at Lotus). If Ferrari want a rapid Raikkonen they'll develop the car to suit him and let Alonso adapt. If they don't, expect Kimi to "lose motivation" and quit at the end of the 2014 season.

It's up to Ferrari.


Actually I believe it was the inherent UNDERSTEER in the McLaren was what Montoya couldn't handle;


(skip to 2:50)

Great post nonetheless.


Ah, touché...and thank you 🙂


You are spot on, Charlie!


Thanks Mel!!!


Actually I don't believe the steering issue was ever sorted out completely to KR's satisfaction, but he made the best of it.

Also in his first year at Ferrari he had to do a lot of work [yes! Kimi did work hard!] with the engineers to understand the car, hence his stellar second half of 2007, which enabled him to win the title. All this was related by Jean Todt.


Hey Charlie! Just to let you know that at least Mika Hakkinen thinks that new turbo-era cars will suit Kimi’s smoother driving style better than Alonso's more aggressive style. Mika being a double world champion should know a thing or two about racing F1 cars. Also Alllison and Kimi seemed to work pretty well together at Lotus in developing the race car.


I hope he's right!


Ferrari are just keeping seat warm for Vettel's arrival, I'm sure a $50million yearly salary + bonus and endorsements and a number 1 status would win Seb's drive, that way Luca undermines Alonso even further like the way Ron Dennis did, if Kimi beats Alonso expect Alonso to be sacked as he would have no leverage just like at McLaren.



Keep dreaming and pray (A LOT) to not see VET and ALO (or LEW or KIM) on the same team.


But Alonso is not idiot, he knows he must start playng his cards from now on and try to make a car that suits him the most. If Ferrari starts 2014 with a car made for Alonso and not so for Kimi (quite probable), changing that is going to be quite difficult if they want to keep the pace. Kimi is not the kind of man that visits the factory every week and can not work on the simulator, so Alonso has the upper hand here. Still, liked your answer!

PD: Would be good if someone could tell how different are Alonso and Kimi driving styles, I believe they are quite different, but not sure.


I do agree. Qualifying makes a big difference, esp when teams are pretty much evenly matched. This will expose FA; if Kimi beats him fairly and will confirm Ferrari's suspicion on FA's weaker quali strength. On a race day, I still think FA will come out on top.


What in every race?


Then be prepared for humble pie. Kimi will toast Alonso. He couldn't even handle a boy in 2007



He was not able to beat MASSA (and sometimes GROS). How do you expect him beating Alonso???


Massa was a very different driver in 08 compared to now.


To be fair, the Massa Kimi was racing was a completely different animal to the 'post crash' Massa who Alonso has been up against.

And Grosjean is damn fast when he strings it together... Possibly the fastest.

I do agree that Alonso will probably still beat Kimi though, it just won't be a complete white wash as it is with Massa.


No point in discussing 2007. Only few people know the truth about what happened behind McLaren doors. Maybe James is one of them.

"Kimi will toast Alonso" sounds similar to "Lewis will toast Jenson" a few years back. Lets wait and watch if it's true this time.


I think most people will happily admit how immensely good Alonso is. I think you might be the one that has to admit how immensely good Kimi is though...


He is! Of course Kimi is awesome, that is part of my point!

But I had in mind the kind of people that says Alo is a bad qualy driver, that can't handle presure, that needs to be nº1, etc.


Sorry, whoever wins the battle among-st them will not win it by a big margin. Neither of those guys are pushovers to be beaten convincingly.


I'm not so sure about that...


If by "big" you mean something similar to the difference we have seen between Alo and Mas the past years I agree, but there is some margin between that and a small margin. I predict a difference of 30-50 points at the end of the year with Alo ahead.


Raikkonen has proved that he can win "given the machinery".

This is a very important point when you consider it. Whether you think in terms of what Alonso has had the last four years and what it means if both are given it in the coming two years.


My point exactly (in my reply to post 21).


Yeah, I really like Kimi and think he's brilliant but doubt he'll be a faster qualifier than Massa... He'll just be much more consistent in races.

Alonso will beat him but Kimi won't care which will make them the perfect and most devastating driver pairing on the grid by a long way.


Will be interesting to watch Alonso self destruct.


LOL so true. Macca boys will laugh to their heart's content with "told you so!"


*So* not going to happen. Lewis was the spoilt child in the '07 scenario, given stupendous machinery, in which he effectively made a very rookie error in China that lost the championship to Ferrari.

I don't think I'm overstating things if I say that Fernando would definitely have won the '07 WDC had McLaren actually given Fernando what he needed to win. They gave Lewis everything and he lost it by sliding into a gravel trap very unceremoniously - and I mean no ill will here, just he was a rookie and Alonso knew it wasn't wise to back him in the same way.

Kimi is not Lewis. He won't care about any team hand-holding he'll just race the car he's given and work to make it suit him as always. So Alonso will be free to work his way, and Kimi free to work his way too.

Fire and Ice.



Richard, do you really believe that Kimi would have just driven into the pits, disregarding the team's message, in 2002 in his first season with McLaren (and 2nd in F1)?

I seriously doubt it. A driver has to trust their team, and in China 2007 McLaren badly let down their lead driver, needlessly.


I guess my point was that Kimi wouldn't have waited for the team, he'd have just driven in to the pits for new tyres!


China wasn't Lewis' error.

He radio'd to be brought in as his tires no longer had grip.

Team ignored the request initially, and when they finally allowed him to come in, the lack of grip that he had warned about, put him in the gravel.


Very good comment. You know your F1 Richard. Way to go!


Fire and Ice... nice one !


`These two will motivate each other sky high!


Or blow the team sky high ! Either way, its gonna be a hell of a ride at Ferrari next year


What? Are you saying that Alonso is Finnished?? Boom! Boom!


Not necessarily self distruct, but it will be interesting to watch.

Has Alonso grown? Has he learned from the McLaren episode?

It will be interesting to watch. There are so many story lines. Including, will Red Bull regret in 2014 not having to neutralized potentially 2 competitors in Ferrari and Lotus with a Kimi move? I'm still OK with the Daniel move, but in 2014 we will see if that Kimi decision would have made life easier for RBR or not.


Welcomeback Kimi!!! I wish you the best of luck.

The one that has to be very happy is Bernie. I expect huge t.v. audience and sold out tickets even in Korea with this Ferrari lineup next year.

As far as personal relationships goes. Well Luca will be the referee. He will have no problem showing yellow cards or even red cars if it´s necesary. I think both Alonso and Raikkonen know this so they will try to avoid trouble


This is absolutely true, Kimi and FA are easily the two most popular and exciting personalities in F1 right now, and they will generate huge interest from fans who are bored with the status quo of VET and RB and want to see drivers they are passionate about fighting for personal glory.


Unbelievable...just unbelievable!!!


"jigsaw"... who proofs these anyway?


What's wrong with "jigsaw"?


Absolutely nothing... there was a typo originally that was fixed.


Congrats Kimi and Congrats Ferrari.

Ferrari have made the bold move but it does make sense because RBR next year will have an unknown quantity in Ricciardo and I think both of these two will get better of Rosberg. That leaves Vettel and Hamilton to do bulk of the work if RBR/Mercedes are to win WCC.

Now, Ferrari, please do 2 things correct;

1) First and Foremost provide these 2 with a car to take on the field right from the start!!

2) Keep Alonso in check! given their track record all these years, it is more likely that **if there are** Fireworks it will most likely be from Alonso's end.

As a Fan of F1, lets hope this goes down very well and we see a great but sporting competition between these two.

Suddenly F1 has become very interesting again!


Who says Ricciardo and Rosberg will just roll over? lets not forget Rosberg is actually quite close to Hamilton and Ricciardo has proven he is super quick and a definite threat to the title if he settles in quick at RBR much like Hamilton did at McLaren, don't forget Alonso and Raikkonen are past their prime now and the only way is down, we shall see what happens.


on what evidence are they past their prime??


Ricciardo super quick? He never won a podium nor he ever qualify in the top 3. Ricciardo is consistant and reliable. He is not clumpsy like Grosjean or Perez are. But that´s not enough to win races.


Hulkenberg in a Force India won the pole last year in Brazil and just last weekend qualified in P3 in a Sauber. Bottas in a sorry Williams also qualified in P3 in Canada. When Vettel was a Toro Rosso driver won a race.

I´m not asking Ricciardo and Vergne to be contenders. But I´d like to see something impressive from them once in a while.


Ah yes, I see your point Anne. The Toro Rosso is such a great car that RIC / JEV should have been fighting for poles and podiums / wins. Total waste of a championship contending car.


When did I say RIC/ROS are will just roll over?

They are both are quick in Qualifying trim but when it comes to race trim; RIC is still unknown and ROS lacks the steely determination to be a champion. ROS seems like a driver who will deliver "on his day", which is stark contrast to what you can expect from HAM/VET.

Hence, I think Ferrari have taken a bold but correct decision in hiring Kimi Alongside Alonso.




Fantastic. This, in my view, will be the strongest team pairing since 1989...


The Ice (Cream) Man returns.

Looking forward to him ruffling Alonso's feathers!


... and the refrigerator!


Can already imagine Stefano stocking up the Vodka and ice cream cones 😛