Lotus F1 team 'turning page' after Raikkonen's exit to Ferrari

Lotus now has to "start a new story" without Kimi Raikkonen, says team boss Eric Boullier, as he insisted there was a long list of potential replacements

Lotus F1 team 'turning page' after Raikkonen's exit to Ferrari

Speaking to AUTOSPORT ahead of the Singapore Grand Prix, Boullier was adamant that he did not regard losing Raikkonen to Ferrari as a blow.

"It is paddock life," he said. "I am happy that two years ago we gambled on Kimi, and it was a nice honeymoon story for two years.

"Now he is moving up to Ferrari. That is life. The combination of Lotus F1 and Kimi worked well in terms of popularity and also sporting-wise, on track.

"It is in some ways disappointing but it is not a blow. Let's turn the page and start a new story."

Nico Hulkenberg heads the list of contenders for the vacant Lotus seat, but Boullier said the shortlist was "quite long, actually. With some funny names... [from] surprising teams."

He added: "It is true that the people you can see, [Felipe] Massa and Hulkenberg, are on the market - so it is true that we talk to them.

"But the list is much, much longer."

Hulkenberg the only correct choice for Lotus

Although Lotus is still shoring up its financial future, aiming to close a deal with investor Infinity Racing and increase engine supplier Renault's support, Boullier denied the team needed Raikkonen's replacement to bring funding.

"It is [more] important if he comes without sponsorship," he said.

"I am doing racing to win; not to make money. This is my wish as a team principal, but the right strategy for an F1 team is you want to choose your drivers or merit, because he fits your strategy or sports model, not because of sponsorship."

Who should get the Lotus seat? Have your say in the AUTOSPORT forum

shares
comments
Stats: Singapore's fabulous four

Previous article

Stats: Singapore's fabulous four

Next article

Kimi Raikkonen: money prompted Lotus exit and Ferrari F1 switch

Kimi Raikkonen: money prompted Lotus exit and Ferrari F1 switch
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Kimi Raikkonen
Teams Ferrari , Team Lotus , Lotus F1 Team
Author Jonathan Noble
The defining traits that set F1’s best apart Plus

The defining traits that set F1’s best apart

What makes the very best drivers in Formula 1 stand out among what is already a highly elite bunch? ANDREW BENSON takes a closer look at those with the special blend of skill, judgment, feel 
and attitude that sets only a select 
few apart from the rest.

How an unlikely F1 outsider gained acceptance Plus

How an unlikely F1 outsider gained acceptance

Channel 4's decision to pick Steve Jones as presenter of its Formula 1 coverage in 2016 raised eyebrows, and his presenting style grated with many fans at first. But, says BEN EDWARDS, Jones has developed into a presenter ripe for modern F1's direction

Formula 1
Mar 6, 2021
The updates Williams hopes will lead to a points-scoring return Plus

The updates Williams hopes will lead to a points-scoring return

After producing a car which demonstrated progress but lacked the points to prove it last year, Williams starts its new era of team ownership with the FW43B, its bid to continue the climb up the Formula 1 grid in 2021

Formula 1
Mar 5, 2021
How Ferrari plans to recover from its 2020 F1 nightmare Plus

How Ferrari plans to recover from its 2020 F1 nightmare

The 2020 Formula 1 season was Ferrari's worst for 40 years as it slumped to sixth in the standings. A repeat performance will not be acceptable for the proud Italian team, which has adopted a notably pragmatic approach to forging its path back to the top

Formula 1
Mar 4, 2021
Why Aston Martin’s arrival is more than just new green livery Plus

Why Aston Martin’s arrival is more than just new green livery

In the most eagerly anticipated Formula 1 team launch of the season, the rebranded Aston Martin squad’s changes go much further than the striking paint job. But rather than a restart, the team hopes to build on top of solid foundations.

Formula 1
Mar 3, 2021
The car Aston Martin begins its new F1 journey with Plus

The car Aston Martin begins its new F1 journey with

The team formerly known as Racing Point gambled successfully on a Mercedes look-alike in 2020 as it mounted a strong challenge for third in the constructors' race and won the Sakhir GP. Now clothed in British racing green, Aston Martin's first Formula 1 challenger since 1960 provides the clearest indicator yet of what to expect from the new-for-2021 regulations

Formula 1
Mar 3, 2021
The driver problems facing Mercedes in 2021 Plus

The driver problems facing Mercedes in 2021

Ahead of the new Formula 1 season, reigning world champions Mercedes will take on challenges both old and new. This also can be said for its driver conundrum which could become key to sustaining its ongoing success

Formula 1
Mar 2, 2021
How Alpine's cure to 2021 F1 rules starts at the front Plus

How Alpine's cure to 2021 F1 rules starts at the front

A new name, new faces and new colours pulls the rebranded Alpine Formula 1 team into a new era while carrying over core elements of its 2020 car. But under the surface there's more than meets the eye with the A521 which hints at how the team will tackle 2021

Formula 1
Mar 2, 2021