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Red Bull held talks with Raikkonen

NEWS STORY
05/09/2021

Christian Horner and Toto Wolff have both admitted that they had talks with Kimi Raikkonen with a view to signing the Finn.

Having announced his decision to retire at season end, it was understandable that drivers and team bosses would be asked to share their memories of the Finn, one of the true characters within the sport.

While Sebastian Vettel joked about his former teammate's laconic approach to interviews and conversations, Christian Horner and Toto Wolff revealed that they had previously had talks with The Iceman with a view to signing him.

"We had some talks with Kimi back when there was a choice of who to replace Mark Webber," said Horner, which means that the Finn almost got the job instead of Daniel Ricciardo.

"After his comeback from his sabbatical, he'd obviously had a relationship with Red Bull during his rallying time and also from the very beginning of his career. So we had some discussions, but it didn't quite come to play."

Walking away from F1 at the end of 2009, Raikkonen returned in 2012 with Lotus-Renault having clearly lost none of his speed. He subsequently rejoined Ferrari - with whom he had won the 2007 title - where he spent five seasons before moving to Alfa Romeo.

Mercedes boss, Toto Wolff admitted that he too had approached Raikkonen, albeit when he was at Williams.

"I had a brief interaction with him in my Williams time, to talk whether he could potentially join Williams," revealed the Austrian.

"Generally I like him as a character, he sticks true to himself."

Aston Martin boss, Otmar Szafnauer subsequently revealed that he too had approached the Finn - twice - initially while working with Honda and later when at Force India.

Raikkonen, who has been ruled out of this weekend's event - and possibly Monza - having tested positive for COVID, is the most experienced driver in the history of F1 having contested 341 Grands Prix, approximately one-third of the 1,036 events held to date.

During his time away from F1 between 2010 and 2011, the Finn contested the World Rally Championship and even a round of the NASCAR Truck series.

Check out our Sunday gallery from Zandvoort, here.

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