HomeFormula 1Why Kimi Raikkonen's return to racing is just the...

Why Kimi Raikkonen’s return to racing is just the news we wanted to hear!

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Three things in any form of Motorsport cannot- and must not- be doubted. First, either Lewis Hamilton or Max Verstappen winning a Formula 1 Grand Prix. Second, a last lap overtake, whether it’s Nascar, Le Mans or F1, and that too, seconds from the checkered flag.

And finally, the man they lovingly call the Iceman of F1 racing: Kimi Raikkonen.

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The latter is down to the reason that, simply put, it’s never say never when it comes to Kimi Raikkonen. 

Last year, at the season-finale at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix of 2021, when asked repeatedly whether one could see him back in action, racing for some series in the course of the future, Kimi, quite simply abstained from answering any direct questions whatsoever.

The quintessential cold glare, unbothered approach and disinterested persona seemed to suggest that he’d already had enough of racing, more specifically, Formula 1.

Add to that confessions in the past that Motor Racing was often about too much politics and that was the sort of thing he didn’t quite like made it amply clear that once he was done, he was done. 

And that it was goodbye for good.

Except it isn’t; Kimi Raikkonen, at the ripe age of 42, just the sort of time where one shuns the steering wheel for the mic in the broadcaster’s room, is making a comeback to full-fledged racing.

And instead of being someone who’d wax lyrical on motor-racing or engage in glib talks and cliched expert analysis from the salubrious comfort of a posh commentary box, Kimi will don racing gear for a Nascar cup series.

About to drive on August 21, 2022 for Trackhouse Racing, based in Nashville, United States, the former 2007 Formula 1 world champion will be seen racing at the prestigious Watkins Glen in New York.

That is where the famously laconic Finn will be driving the No.91 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1.

Raikkonen, most famously went out of Formula 1 during his active days, wherein he took a two year hiatus from motorsport’s top flight.

During that time, the enigmatic Espoo-born competed in pretty much everything he could lay his hands on: World Rallying Championship and even participated in the Camping World Truck Series under NASCAR.

From being the famously monosyllabic Finn of F1 who didn’t care a darn about anything other than pure racing, Raikkonen, at that point in time, shifted base from Europe to America.

And it is America again where the former Ferrari world champion is bound to return to racing, albeit not in F1- but NASCAR.

That being said, here’s what a noted Indian media publication said about Kimi returning to the track, albeit in Nascar:

Raikkonen, who won the F1 Drivers’ Championship in 2007 while driving for Scuderia Ferrari, will now be participating as a part of a program called PROJECT91 with the aim of expanding Trackhouse’s international reach.

Trackhouse Racing is a division of Trackhouse Entertainment Group, which is a venture of former racer Justin Marks and rapper Pitbull.

While Raikkonen has previously competed in the Xfinity and Truck Series races at Charlotte Motor Speedway, he has never competed in a Cup race.

All of that said, what will be most interesting is that going by self-admission, Kimi isn’t competing at the soon-to-be-held Nascar contest at Watkins Glen for cheap thrills or random fun; he’s maintained that he will be giving his absolute best and keenly awaits the racing cup series to begin.

Could the 2022 race, therefore, signal more recurrences or events like that in the imminent future?

Bwoah, who knows!

What’s known is that even at an age where most are either considered easily past their prime or simply put, not good enough for any form of single-seater motor-racing, Kimi was quite the opposite.

At the 2020 Portuguese Grand Prix, to quote an example of his sheer pace and unfailing reflexes at age 40, Raikkonen made up no fewer than 10 places at the start to go up to sixth, having started from sixteenth on the grid.

Driving an Alfa Romeo, a drab midfielder and anything but a fast charger, Raikkonen proved, once again, just why he’s so highly rated and as one commentator put it aptly, belonged “in a league of his own!”

Can familiar magic come to light this time around for NASCAR? Lot’s to think and hope about, Kimsters- right? But let’s eschew conjecture and wait for the race to unfold.

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Dev Tyagi
Dev Tyagi
Dravid believer, admirer of - the square drive, Drew Barrymore, Germany, Finland, Electric Mobility, simplicity and the power of the written word! Absolutely admire contributing to KyroSports

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