The Kimi controversy


Staff Member
These days all the talk seems to be about Lewis Hamilton being lucky to walk straight into a top team in F1.

However, there was another controversy back in 2001.
It involved a young driver who at just 21 years of age and with only 23 car races to his credit was granted an F1 Super Licence.

At the time there were many critics, not least of all FIA President, Max Mosley.

Of course Kimi went on to disprove those critics and scored a championship point in the 2001 Australian Grand Prix, his maiden Grand Prix.
Bearing in mind it was his first ever race, you have to wonder at the mindset of someone who could sleep barely 30 minutes before the most important race of his life thus far:

With just over 30 minutes remaining before the start, the tension was palpable, particularly leading into a race that would end four months of preparation, hype and speculation. As the engineers and mechanics controlled their nerves while preparing for their first proper test of the year, Raikkonen was nowhere to be seen. His engineer eventually found him, dozing gently in a room at the back of the garage. [SOURCE]

So even back then the Iceman was living up to his name.
Despite the fact that he's driving a Ferrari he's one of my favourite drivers. I found it hard to undestand his mixed season, he seemed unable to maintain speed throughout the whole race. I've heard stories about him being unsettled by Schumacher's continued presence but have no idea what truth there is behind it. Above everything, he seems to be one of the most down-to-earth drivers on the grid. He gets a :thumbsup: from me.
As I've said in another thread, Emerson Fittipaldi and David Coulthard both walked into top drives (ok it was down to tragic circumstances with the deaths of Rindt and Senna) and both showed just how quick they were. I don't really buy the stepping into a top seat as a rookie as a reason to dislike Lewis especially when you consider his links with Mclaren and the driver development programme. Surely that's the point of developing young drivers. It's like having a go at Ryan Giggs for not starting with Forest Green Rovers but making his debut with Man Utd.
Cider, I totally agree. The bottom line is that some drivers can go straight into a top team and perform at the hgihest level and some show that they're 'goods but not greats'. IMO Hamilton has proved he's extremely quick and barring some of his sillier antics this season he's been great.
Firstly, thanks to "Cliptheapex" for permitting me to subscribe.

I personally am a great fan of Lewis and when it doesn't make me shiver about the car he drives Kimi. Following that, I also hold respect for Massa although some of his results are questionable. This said they are all aligned to "Superior" teams. The likes of Vettel has proved himself as a performer and I believe his potential if he gets in the same "Superior" league will be awesome. But to throw a new thought into the equation. Torro Rosso will allow the newcomer from NZ, Hartley, to Test Drive for them in Dec due to Webber falling off his pushbike. Hartley came 3rd. at the Macau GP (Which I was fortunate enough to able to attend) with a reasonable showing, and again, similar to Lewis with McLaren, was part of a well financed backer being Red Bull. The real star was the young Japanese driver who took the laurels in magnificent style for Tom's Racing. Kunimoto drove a seasoned race and at 19 yrs old that is astonishing, his win logged him as the youngest ever winner of the unofficial F3 World Championship. I think we will soon be seeing him snapped up by either Toyota or Honda so their lacklustre pilots had better beware. I think we will be seeing some young, really agressive competition coming into F1 in the near future..........All we need is to get rid of the dinosaur the controls it and his mind-boggling ideas.
Yorkshire, Welcome to the board.

Agree with your comments. A fast driver from the far east has been long overdue. I have been disapointed with Kazuki Nakajima this season becuase he did look like being a genuine prospect. I would be suprised if Torro Rosso did opt for Sato but I guess it will boil down to funds.
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