Eddie Jordan believes Daniel Ricciardo will end up as Sebastian Vettel's new team-mate next season, as he cannot see how Kimi Raikkonen and Red Bull Racing will find 'common ground'.
Since Mark Webber announced his decision to retire
from F1 last month and switch to sports cars with Porsche, there has been lots of speculation about who will replace the Aussie, with Raikkonen and Toro Rosso duo Ricciardo and Jean-Eric Vergne confirmed as the three main candidates by Red Bull Racing team principal, Christian Horner.
It now seems though that it is a straight choice between Ricciardo and Raikkonen, and while the latter may be viewed as the favourite, EJ is now tipping the former.
“At first I was pretty sure that Kimi Raikkonen would replace Mark Webber, but now I am ready to change my mind and here's why,” the former F1 team boss turned pundit for BBC Sport
ahead of this weekend's Hungarian Grand Prix.
“Sebastian Vettel will stay at Red Bull Racing until 2015, and it is probably not the best time for Kimi to become his team-mate. I think Red Bull will opt for Daniel Riccardo.
“Also I do not think Raikkonen will want to do an extensive programme at Red Bull, with all the marketing, the work with sponsors, the photo shoots, and so on.
"That is the sort of thing that every driver has to do for that team. Red Bull has a marketing programme, and Kimi just wants to be a racer. I do not think they will find common ground.”
Former F1 race winner, Ralf Schumacher meanwhile is not so convinced and believes Raikkonen may be prepared to make sacrifices in his bid to try and land another F1 drivers' title.
“In his situation, I would go to Red Bull without hesitation - not for one second [would I hesitate],” the German stated in an interview with Finland's MTV3
broadcaster. “It is true that we don't know every detail, like what kind of deal Sebastian Vettel has.
"But if Red Bull Racing gives both drivers equal equipment it would be a brilliant opportunity for Kimi, because he is a great driver.”