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Ferrari team principal explains decision to drop Raikkonen

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Ferrari team principal explains decision to drop Raikkonen


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14 Sep 2018, 18:22 IST

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SINGAPORE (AP) — Ferrari’s decision now not to stay Kimi Raikkonen subsequent season used to be in keeping with the team’s long-term long term moderately than the motive force’s present shape.

The 38-year-old Raikkonen, the 2007 Formula One champion, is being changed subsequent season by means of 20-year-old Charles Leclerc.

Leclerc got here during the Ferrari academy program however is racing in his first F1 season with the Sauber team. Raikkonen has 20 grand prix wins amongst his 100 occupation podiums.

“It’s very important to look at the team perspective, in two or three years. In my opinion that justifies our choice enough,” Ferrari team principal Maurizio Arrivabene stated on Friday.

“It’s not a decision looking at the (current) situation or only next year. My job is to look at the future of the team. … How you’re going to grow a young talent and what you’re going to expect from him in the future.”

Raikkonen will substitute Leclerc at Sauber subsequent 12 months. He is becoming a member of on a two-year deal, which means he’s going to be 41 by means of the top of the 2020 season.

But the decision now not to stay the constant Raikkonen stunned some observers, as a result of he has six podiums previously seven races and 9 in 13 total this season.

“This has nothing to do with the respect I have for Kimi, which is great as a human being and as a driver. If you have to (make) a choice, thinking about the future, we made the right choice for us and for Kimi,” Arrivabene stated. “I took him through the process of the decision and he didn’t even try to say, ‘I would like you to change your mind.'”

Raikkonen used to be advised in a while ahead of the Italian GP. Two days later, he took pole place in Monza.

Arrivabene replied paradoxically to ideas Raikkonen took the decision badly.

“Kimi was so nervous and so unhappy when I told him on Thursday that he made pole position on Saturday,” Arrivabene stated. “When I read criticism I was thinking, if it’s like this I’m going to make him unhappy every week so he gives us pole position. We’re talking about a professional driver, not kids driving at the Lunar Park, OK?”

The highlight might be firmly on Leclerc subsequent season, however Arrivabene assume it can be unrealistic to be expecting him to compete for the name.

“The first mistake is to put too much pressure on the shoulders of this guy,” Arrivabene stated. “It could potentially be a huge mistake.”

Meanwhile, Arrivabene left the door open for every other younger driving force to come during the Ferrari ranks at Maranello: Mick Schumacher.

The 19-old-Schumacher is 2nd within the F3 championship. He is the son of F1 nice Michael Schuamcher, who received 5 of his file seven F1 titles with Ferrari.

“The most important thing is to let him grow, without pressure. I wish him a great career. With a name like this I think the door is always open, of course, but without burning steps,” Arrivabene stated. “To go slowly but (surely), then we will see about the future. How can you say no at Maranello to a name like this?”

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Jerome Pugmire on Twitter: www.twitter.com/jeromepugmire

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