Raikkonen - It 'wasn't difficult' to prolong F1 stay
Kimi Raikkonen has revealed it was an easy decision for him to extend his Alfa Romeo contract for 2021 rather than retiring.
In a productive two days for the team ahead of this weekend's Emilia Romagna Grand Prix at Imola, the team has confirmed Raikkonen and team-mate Antonio Giovinazzi for next season, while Alfa Romeo is to also continue in Formula 1.
Currently in his 18th F1 season after debuting in 2001, albeit taking a two-year hiatus in 2010 and 2011, the 41-year-old Raikkonen had previously suggested family concerns could sway him to leave again.
But when offered a new deal, Raikkonen said: "No, I don’t think it was difficult.
"There was nothing to confirm before we signed the contract. We signed it yesterday, basically.
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"You keep asking always about the future but if we haven’t signed anything, I couldn’t start lying!
"I don’t think it was difficult but there are many aspects from the team’s side on what they want to do, what I want to do.
"There are other things in our life to look into but in the end, it made sense from my side and also from their side. Once we started to talk about it, it wasn’t such a long process."
Raikkonen is the only driver on the grid who has previous F1 experience at Imola, competing in a total of six grands prix, including finishing second in 2003 and securing pole position in 2005 for McLaren.
At present, Raikkonen acknowledges nobody at Alfa Romeo is happy with the team's current position and has vowed to start making inroads and climb up the grid again ahead of what will be his fourth season with the team.
"Unfortunately, this is the situation right now and the aim is to improve and be a lot better off," added Raikkonen.
"But there is no guarantee or anything so we have to just do a better job overall and hopefully next year we’ll be a bit happier with things and be where we expect to be."
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