By Joey Barnes, Editor-in-Chief
Kimi Raikkonen remained unflappable in Thursday’s FIA press conference leading up to the Austrian Grand Prix, despite a mass of questions regarding rumors centering over his future at Ferrari.
The 2007 Formula 1 champion’s contract with the Italian manufacturer expires at the end of the season.
In the midst of a dogfight with Mercedes for F1 supremacy, neither Raikkonen or teammate Sebastian Vettel have won yet this season, with both amassing five runner-up finishes thus far.
However, Ferrari president and CEO Sergio Marchionne warned that Raikkonen must “show he deserves to stay here.”
The 36-year-old Finn shrugged off the speculation and acknowledged that this is a continuous cycle in F1.
“I have a contract for this year and I don’t know what will happen next year,” Raikkonen said. “There’s always a lot of talk every year, since I got to Formula One it’s the same story, it’s nothing new and people talk a lot all the time.
“But people can say whatever they want. They have very, very little understanding of what’s really going on. If I were making all the decisions it would very easy to know what I would do, but I don’t.
“We try to do our best and for sure the team knows my side of the story and that’s enough for me. I have no interest in talking about it here or anywhere else, apart from with the team.”
After starting the season with three podiums in the opening five races, Raikkonen recent runs have seen his season unravel and has fallen fourth in the championship, 60 points behind leader Nico Rosberg. Some of the issues have been due to questionable strategy and other times being the victim of overly-aggressive drivers. Despite this, he was quick to stay positive about the current Formula 1 campaign.
“I think we did the best we could,” Raikkonen said. “People outside the team can talk as much as they want, we can’t control them and it’s not our business.
“Obviously, as a team we’re always trying to improve we always look at what we’ve done over the weekends, we haven’t had easy weekends lately but we managed to turn things around quite well as a team.Some decisions have to be made and I have no issues with them.
“We try to make the best as a team and certain situations changed because of those decisions.”