Can two world champions exist on the same team? We will find out soon enough as 2007 Formula One (F1) champ Kimi Raikkonen is rejoining Ferrari with a two-year agreement starting next season (source: Ferrari). The Iceman will be paired with two-time F1 champion Fernando Alonso, making up a twosome that will be the most dynamic driver tandem in recent history.
Raikkonen, of Finland, returns to Ferrari, replacing 32 year old Brazilian Felipe Massa who was never the same after crashing four seasons ago. Raikkonen won the ‘07 F1 championship in his first season at Ferrari; but after a less than triumphant year in ’09, Kimi left Ferrari and F1 with a year still left on his contract – Spainerd Alonso, then driving for Renault, replaced the Iceman the following season. After a three-year hiatus that saw the Finn race in World Rally plus dabble in NASCAR, Kimi returned to F1 in 2012, driving for Lotus. Raikkonen has been one of the steadiest competitors these past two seasons, consistently staying in the top five.
Massa never completely returned
Massa first confirmed the move on Twitter saying he wouldn’t be back at Ferrari next year. He has been with the Maranello group since 2006 when he was coupled with Michael Schumacher the year before Schumacher retired the first time. Raikkonen took Michael’s place at Ferrari and proceeded to win the world championship in ‘07. During the first three seasons at Ferrari, Massa was third, fourth and second, losing the world title by a mere one point in 2008. However, in the summer of ’09 at the Hungaroring, a piece of debris struck him in the head which nearly cost him his life. Felipe was able to return the following year but never managed to crack the top five in points.
Massa hasn’t given up driving in F1 and stated he still wants to drive for an F1 title saying,
“For next year, I want to find a team that can give me a competitive car to win many more races and challenge for the championship, which remains my greatest objective!”
The 33 year old Raikkonen appears to be as a joyful as a Finn can get when he stated,
“Happy to be returning to Maranello.”
Raikkonen replaces Massa and joins Alonso, giving Ferrari the most dynamic duo since Batman and Robin. With two head-strong champions, the big question will be who is Robin? We’ll have to wait until 2014 and this fan is looking forward to a match that may either be made in heaven ... or hell. What do you think?