Raikkonen rules out F1 return in 2011
|By David Evans||Friday, October 29th 2010, 08:19 GMT|
Kimi Raikkonen's management team has confirmed that the Finn is no longer looking at Formula 1 race options for next season, as the World Rally Championship is where he wants to stay in 2011.
Speaking to Finnish television station MTV3, Steve Roberston admitted Raikkonen wants to remain where he is.
"We're no longer looking at opportunities in F1. Kimi seems to be focused on rallying at the moment," said Robertson.
He refused to rule out a longer-term return to Formula 1 or racing for the 30-year old, adding: "Never say never, but right now our eye is not on F1.
"Nothing's been decided yet [for the WRC]. We'll let you know when there is something to say. At the moment nothing has been signed. We're talking to several teams."
In recent days, there has been increased speculation that Citroen will find a solution to keep Raikkonen in its Junior team with the 2007 F1 world champion taking money from a personal sponsorship deal from Red Bull, which is expected to be considerably lower than the £5m he is rumoured to have been paid by the Austrian firm this season.
Beyond Citroen, Mini remains an option for Raikkonen, but the limited programme of 2011 events and the high level of car development would not suit his experience or desire to be driving all the time at the moment.
A seat alongside Ken Block at the Monster Ford World Rally Team is another option, but there are funding issues for the American-based outfit.
Block admitted running with Raikkonen would offer great potential exposure for both Monster and DC Shoes, but he added a decision on a potential second driver may not be taken until early next year.
The final option for Raikkonen is a season away from rallying, with a possible return when there is likely to be more manufacturer interest in 2012.