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GRAPEVINE - SOFT NEWS, RUMOURS & SPECULATION 

Raikkonen beaten to Finnish award

Kimi Raikkonen may have brought Finland its first Formula One world championship since 1999, but it was not enough to convince the country's sports journalists to vote him as their 'Sportsman of the Year' in 2007.

The Ferrari driver had been expected to take the annual accolade, but in the end he could manage no better than third place in the rankings.

The Finnish sports journalists voted world javelin champion Tero Pitkamaki as their athlete of the year, following on from his crowning as the European Athletics Association's 'European Athlete of the Year'.

Pitkamaki was put in first place by 203 journalists and collected a total of 4,724 points.

Runner-up spot went to cross-country skier Virpi Kuitunen, who won medals at the Nordic World Ski Championships as well as took victory in the 2006/7 Cross-Country Skiing World Cup.

Kuitunen was elected in first place by 118 journalists, while Raikkonen was elected in first place by 149. However, the skier accumulted more points than the Ferrari driver - 4,088 compared with 4,021 to Raikkonen.

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