Kimi Raikkonen Reveals He was Very Close to Signing for Williams in 2012 For F1 Return

Published 12/09/2019, 4:45 PM EST
Kimi Raikkonen

Kimi Raikkonen is pretty much the elder statesman in Formula One, with a long career spanning right from 2001. Recently, he and former racing driver Toni Vilander sat down to look at snapshots of the Finn’s racing career.

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The veteran Finn admitted that the triumphant return came as a bit of a surprise for him as well. He also admitted that without his brief stint in NASCAR, he wouldn’t have tried to come back.

Since he got to race against many other cars, he found that it was fun, so he really began to think. He said, “If you feel that you want to race, do it in Formula One.”

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It was also worth noting that Kimi Raikkonen revealed an interesting tidbit to Vilander about his return. Apparently, ahead of the 2012 season, Raikkonen approached the Williams team for a seat. However, he followed it up saying that things turned around quickly when he talked to Lotus.

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Kimi Raikkonen in Lotus

According to the veteran, the Lotus talks progressed quicker than expected and a deal was struck within a few weeks. In the end, Williams opted to run Pastor Maldonado and Bruno Senna for the 2012 season.

Meanwhile, Raikkonen was partnered by Romain Grosjean, and the two dragged the outfit to 4th in the championship. The Finn on the other end of the spectrum ended up 3rd in the driver’s championship with six podiums and a win in Abu Dhabi. That Abu Dhabi race would later become famous of Kimi’s ‘Leave Me Alone I Know What I’m Doing’ radio message.

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Coming back to the Williams F1 team, they scored a lucky win, courtesy Maldonado in Spain. Other than that, they had a fairly lacklustre season, with only a handful of points finishes and a highest position of 5th since that victory.

Kimi Raikkonen could have been in this car

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Dhruv George

12932 articles

Dhruv George is a senior Formula One and NASCAR analyst for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.

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