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Vettel: I like Kimi

NEWS STORY
19/07/2018

Ferrari has a dilemma. While Charles Leclerc is impressing mightily in the Sauber, for the most part Kimi Raikkonen is giving a very good account of himself alongside Sebastian Vettel.

Third in the driver standings, with six podium finishes, the Finn, though he has yet to take a pole position or win a race this season, is showing no sign of looking to slow down, far less hang up his helmet... again.

Therefore, Ferrari has to make a decision, does it stick with the Finn for another season or has Leclerc done enough to get promotion.

While some feel the Monegasque might benefit from another season with a lower team - Haas being the obvious choice - others feel that Vettel might look on the youngster's arrival as deja vu having been put well and truly in the shade at Red Bull by the arrival of Daniel Ricciardo in 2013.

Speaking at Hockenheim, though insisting that he has no say in the matter, the German made clear that he would prefer to maintain the status quo.

"I don't know Charles much," he admitted, "I know him a little bit through the (Ferrari Academy) programme.

"Kimi is Finnish, Charles is French, they are quite different" he continued, before quickly correcting himself, and adding "Monegasque".

"I like Kimi, we get along," he added, "we never have any issues. Sometimes, on track, I remember I drove into him, crashed into him... I think the way we handle things is very straightforward. I think it's great to work with him, it's great for the team... but it's not my decision. We'll see what happens.

Asked if he has a preference for Raikkonen to be retained in 2019, Vettel said: "I like Kimi, and as I said, I'd be happy to continue like that. But it's not for me to decide.

"Charles, one way or another, will have a great career," he continued. "I think he is a great guy, he's fast, he's got everything, so he has no rush. He's young, and if you're young you're always in a rush, with everything.

"So, I don't know when, what, who... it doesn't really matter to me, it's clear where I am next year, I think both of them would suit into the team."

Check out our Thursday gallery from Hockenheim, here.

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