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Raikkonen to sit-out 2010 season

NEWS STORY
18/11/2009

Kimi Raikkonen's manager, Steve Robertson, has said that the 2007 World Champion will take a sabbatical next season after failing to secure a seat with McLaren.

The Finn, who was given an extremely generous pay-off by Ferrari in order to vacate his seat early and hand it to Fernando Alonso, had previously said that he would only compete in 2010 if he could secure a drive with a top flight team. However, talking to Finnish newspaper Turun Sanomat, Robertson revealed that such a deal was highly unlikely and that Raikkonen would opt to watch from the sidelines.

"The options were with McLaren next season or not at all," he said. "However, Kimi and McLaren were unable to reach an agreement, and consequently he will not drive at the level of F1, at least not next year.

"A gap year means nothing for Kimi," he added. "He is more interested in fighting for wins and the World Championship. F1 will miss him, he worked hard over the summer doing things in a Ferrari that only the best drivers are capable of."

Robertson was unable to give any details as to how Raikkonen will spend his time next year, however, the Finn has made no secret of his desire to try other disciplines, and having contested a round of the WRC this year a few more rally appearances could be on the cards.

The fact that Raikkonen was unable to agree a deal with McLaren appears to suggest that the Woking team is now focussing on Jenson Button.

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