Contract negotiations in Formula One always come down to a wild card or two. And though we're barely halfway through the current championship, for the coming season, that wild card appears to belong to Kimi Raikkonen.

The 2007 F1 champ defected to the World Rally Championship when he didn't like his options at the end of last season, and since then rumormill has run rampant with speculation of his return to single-seaters. Various reports placed him at Red Bull Racing, Renault or Mercedes GP for 2011, but the latest paddock scuttlebutt suggests he'll stay on the rally stage for at least another year.

Kimi's long-term future remains to be determined, though his partnership with Red Bull (which sponsors his Citroën rally car) ostensibly opens the door for a return with the energy drink's premier F1 team. But based on how things look at the moment, that won't come until 2012 at the earliest, so the rest of the Formula One grid can breathe a little easier for another season.

[Source: Autosport.com Image: Red Bull WRC]