20 seasons with the Toyota Grand Prix Team; 20 years as a driver (32 races) with Ferrari; two decades of fuming, and now, one less seat at the end of the Formula One season. Kimi Raikkonen is calling it quits at the end of the Formula One season.
After more than three decades in Formula One, a few seasons with Albert Park, and a dip to test driving, Kimi Raikkonen is hanging up his racing tires for good. After Honda returned for a short test at the Australian Grand Prix last month, this photo of the Hakka great at Albert Park announcing his retirement has gone viral, dominating social media.
Raikkonen’s career has been built off an immense performance during the 2006 world championships, when the 38-year-old was able to clinch the winning point for Ferrari, driving a stunning victory from 13th on the starting grid.
The ending of Raikkonen’s era at Ferrari is a surer sign of looming financial troubles within the organization. Ferrari has been rocked by financial troubles in recent years, with a recent news report concluding that Ferrari missed the 60 million euros (almost $71 million) on a loan they owed to Mercedes.
While Ferrari has continued to be one of the strongest teams in Formula One, and only two points behind current team leader Lewis Hamilton, the organization is bleeding cash, and the results don’t reflect that. F1 became a rebranding project for Ferrari after the scandal involving Maranello not preparing its team properly for the 2005 world championships.