Alonso, Vettel will miss "outstanding" Raikkonen when he exits F1

Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso believe an "outstanding" Kimi Raikkonen will not only be missed as a Formula 1 driver, but also as a person.

Raikkonen announced in September that the 2021 season will be his last in the sport, bringing a career that spans over 20 years to a close.

The 42-year-old Finn made his F1 debut with Sauber in 2001 and went on to win the 2007 title with Ferrari, scoring a total of 21 victories with the Italian squad and McLaren.

Vettel was Raikkonen's teammate at the Scuderia from 2015 to 2018, and the four-time champion is one of the few drivers the Finn considers his friend.

The German admitted he feels "great respect" for Raikkonen for the way he has stayed unchanged throughout the years.

"I think it's a natural thing," said Vettel of Raikkonen's retirement.

"Time goes one way, and at some point, time comes for him, and at some point, time will come for me and at some point even time will come for Lando, even though that's a long way to go.

"It's probably the most natural thing. Will he be missed? Yes. I think he was a true character, and I enjoyed the time I had with him as a teammate.

"But to be fair, I got to know him already before, and he's probably one of the very few drivers I've met from day one until today that hasn't changed in the sense that he has been very, very open, welcoming me as a young kid when I entered F1, and at that point he was probably the most established Formula 1 driver.

Kimi Raikkonen, Alfa Romeo Racing, Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin

Kimi Raikkonen, Alfa Romeo Racing, Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin

Photo by: Alessio Morgese

"Great respect. I don't think you can have an argument or a problem with Kimi. If you do, then the problem is not him, the problem is you.

"He's a great person, and I'm sure we'll stay in touch. I wish him all the best and I will miss the silence."

Two-time world champion Alonso, who partnered Raikkonen at Ferrari in 2014, labelled the Finn a "very good person" who changes dramatically when he is away from the track.

"I think Kimi will be missed in Formula 1," said Alonso. "I like him a lot, the way in his own way he loves the sport, and has been for so many years in Formula 1.

Read Also:

"I think he's very honest always, which I really like that part of Kimi. And I think outside he is maybe, mask off of being a cold and Iceman, there is a very good person inside that you meet from time to time outside the circuit.

"We meet in airports, restaurants, places that you are not in this paddock environment and Kimi is a different person.

"As I said, he has been outstanding for Formula 1, and he will be missed because he has his own character and he was different."

shares
comments

Related video

Why aren't F1 trophies given at the last race of the season?
Previous article

Why aren't F1 trophies given at the last race of the season?

Next article

Hamilton not 'comfortable' in Saudi Arabia amid human rights issues

Hamilton not 'comfortable' in Saudi Arabia amid human rights issues
Load comments
Unpacking the technical changes behind F1 2022's rules shake-up Prime

Unpacking the technical changes behind F1 2022's rules shake-up

Formula 1 cars will look very different this year as the long-awaited fresh rules finally arrive with the stated aim of improving its quality of racing. We break down what the return of 'ground effect' aerodynamics - and a flurry of other changes besides - means for the teams, and what fans can expect

Formula 1
Jan 21, 2022
Why F1's new era is still dogged by its old world problems Prime

Why F1's new era is still dogged by its old world problems

OPINION: The 2022 Formula 1 season is just weeks away from getting underway, but instead of focusing on what is to come, the attention still remains on what has been – not least the Abu Dhabi title decider controversy. That, plus other key talking points, must be resolved to allow the series to warmly welcome in its new era

Formula 1
Jan 20, 2022
The Schumacher trait that will give Haas hope in F1 2022 Prime

The Schumacher trait that will give Haas hope in F1 2022

Mick Schumacher’s knack of improving during his second season in a championship was a trademark of his junior formula career, so his progress during his rookie Formula 1 campaign with Haas was encouraging. His target now will be to turn that improvement into results as the team hopes to reap the rewards of sacrificing development in 2021

Formula 1
Jan 19, 2022
The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push Prime

The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push

As the driver of Formula 1’s medical car, Alan van der Merwe’s job is to wait – and hope his skills aren’t needed. James Newbold hears from F1’s lesser-known stalwart.

Formula 1
Jan 15, 2022
When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push Prime

When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push

There was an ace up the sleeve during the 1983 F1 title-winning season of Nelson Piquet and Brabham. It made a frontrunning car invincible for the last three races to see off Renault's Alain Prost and secure the combination's second world title in three years

Formula 1
Jan 13, 2022
How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner Prime

How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner

Brabham’s first world championship race-winning car was held back by unreliable Climax engines – or so its creators believed, as STUART CODLING explains

Formula 1
Jan 10, 2022
The steps Norris took to reach a new level in the 2021 F1 season Prime

The steps Norris took to reach a new level in the 2021 F1 season

Lando Norris came of age as a grand prix driver in 2021. McLaren’s young ace is no longer an apprentice or a quietly capable number two – he’s proved himself a potential winner in the top flight and, as Stuart Codling finds out, he’s ready to stake his claim to greatness…

Formula 1
Jan 9, 2022
How Fangio set the bar for Schumacher and Hamilton in F1 Prime

How Fangio set the bar for Schumacher and Hamilton in F1

Juan Manuel Fangio, peerless on track and charming off it, established the gold standard of grand prix greatness. Nigel Roebuck recalls a remarkable champion.

Formula 1
Jan 8, 2022