F1 »

Horner: Has Kimi signed anywhere else?

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner refuses to rule anyone - including Kimi Raikkonen - out of the race to replace Mark Webber next season.
Red Bull team boss Christian Horner insists that no decision has been taken regarding Sebastian Vettel's team-mate for 2014, despite suggestions that Kimi Raikkonen is now out of the race to partner the German.

The ongoing saga of whether the 2007 world champion would make the move from Lotus to Red Bull appeared to have been put to rest in the build-up to this weekend's Belgian Grand Prix, when manager Steve Robertson claimed that talks with RBR had broken down. Horner, however, says that all options remain open to his team until drivers are confirmed as signing elsewhere.

"Kimi's manager ruled him out, I think, [but] I've only seen what you've seen," the Briton told Sky Sports ahead of Friday practice at Spa-Francorchamps, "Has [Raikkonen] signed for anyone else? It's up to him….”

With the biggest rival to Raikkonen, Daniel Ricciardo, insisting that he has [ not yet had a contract to join Red Bull ], and the Milton Keynes team admitting that it is unlikely to announce Mark Webber's successor until [ the Italian Grand Prix ] in two weeks' time, it has to be assumed that talks with other parties – namely Raikkonen – are ongoing. Sky's Martin Brundle has already claimed that Robertson's comments were part of a bigger game of bluff , while Horner insisted, among his latest comments, that he remains spoiled for choice.

"You have to make sure you consider all the options and there's more options than you could possibly think," he noted, "There's been quite a lot of interest, so we just take the time. It's not going to be much longer - I'd have thought by Monza, or shortly after Monza, we should be clear."

Coincidentally, Ferrari is also rumoured to be making its mind up about Felipe Massa's future 'after the Italian Grand Prix', confirming suggestions that Raikkonen could still be a contender to return to Maranello. Of course, Horner hinted at last month's Hungarian Grand Prix that Fernando Alonso may be a late contender for the RBR vacancy – a rumour perpetuated by sightings of the Briton in conversation with Alonso's manager at the Hungaroring….

"I think the problem is you get to this point of the year and there's so many rumours, hearsay, this, that and the other,” Horner claimed, “I saw [Raikkonen] was going to Ferrari a couple of days ago…

"There is no transfer window in F1 - we are not obliged to make a decision until we choose to. As I say, we want to make sure that we make the right decision and we will take the time that we feel appropriate to make that decision."

Horner also denied that he was under pressure to sign Ricciardo, either as a subservient number two to Vettel or to appease Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko and team owner Dietrich Mateschitz, who are rumoured to favour Ricciardo as validation of the company's driver development programme.

"Ultimately, Dietrich has to sign off on any decision of that magnitude, but he will listen to the recommendations that Adrian [Newey] and I put forward," the Briton insisted.

Vettel, meanwhile, appears to have had a change of heart when it comes to possibly partnering Raikkonen, admitting on the eve of the Belgian race that ' would have been good to team up with the Finn.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
26.07.2013- Free practice 1, Fernando Alonso (ESP) Scuderia Ferrari F138
25.07.2013- Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR8
28.07.2013- Podium winner 2nd Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Lotus F1 Team E21, 3rd Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB9
28.07.2013- Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Lotus F1 Team E21
09.06.2013- Race, Christian Horner (GBR), Red Bull Racing, Sporting Director
26.07.2013- Free practice 2, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Lotus F1 Team E21
25.06.2017 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
25.06.2017 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
25.06.2017 - Race, The race stopped, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32 and the Safety car
25.06.2017 - Race, Carlos Sainz Jr (ESP) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR12 and Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32
25.06.2017 - Race, Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM010 and Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H
25.06.2017 - Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32 and Marcus Ericsson (SUE) Sauber C36
25.06.2017 - Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H
25.06.2017 - Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32 and 3rd place Lance Stroll (CDN) Williams FW40
25.06.2017 - Race, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB13 race winner
25.06.2017 - Race, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB13 race winner
25.06.2017 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H
25.06.2017 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.


August 23, 2013 8:45 AM

My guess - they made one last bid to Kimi, he didn't say if he was interested or not, so they were going to sign Ricciardo at Spa, but Kimi said he was interested at the last moment. That's how it feels like to me.

Yes Yes Yes Leave Me Alone

August 23, 2013 11:11 AM

Ricciardo would be good in that car, so nothing against him. However, RBR have a great chance to put two of the greatest drivers of the modern era together in their cars (Alonso or Raikkonen), and that chance doesn't come around very often - I hope they go for it!

© 1999 - 2017 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.