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Kimi Raikkonen at the Brickyard for the 2007 United States Grand Prix – not his last time at the speedway?

What does a U.S. president do after he's finished his term in office? Whatever the heck he wants. That's because he's already reached the top of his game and has nothing left to prove but to use his considerable influence and experience towards whatever end he chooses. The same might be said of a Formula One World Champion. Take Kimi Raikkonen, for example, who won the title in 2007. He turned his back on F1 when he'd had enough, and is now trying his hand at rallying in the World Rally Championship. But if the latest reports are any indication, the Finnish driver has had enough of that, as well, and is eager to try something new.

That something, according to the latest reports from his home country, is NASCAR. Now, we could chalk this up to a slightly premature April Fool's Day gag, but if accurate, Raikkonen could be preparing an assault on America's oval speedways. The report alleges a new team under Kimi's ICE 1 Racing banner is being established in conjunction with Foster Gillett – the sports arm of American businessman George Gillett's enterprise that formerly owned the Montreal Canadiens (the winningest team in all of professional sports), the Premier league Liverpool Football Club, and Richard Petty Motorsports (previously known as Gillett Evernham Motorsports).

If the reports prove accurate – and we're still taking this with a big grain of salt – Raikkonen will start off in the Craftsman truck series before moving up to the Nationwide series and finally the top-tier Sprint Cup. In doing so, he'd be joining his old McLaren teammate Juan Pablo Montoya, as well as fellow former champion Jacques Villeneuve in migrating from F1 to NASCAR. Watch this space for more as it emerges.

[Source: Turun Sanomat (translated) | Image: Ferrari]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      I hope he knows what to do with his hands during his first interview
      • 4 Years Ago

      F1 is the pinnacle of automotive racing. I'd pass on the extra money and stay with F1, I can't stand NASCAR.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I can't stand it either, but I did watch a couple of the road course races last year, and they were actually pretty good. The real race car drivers dominated, not the usual NASCAR front runners.

        NASCAR should add more road courses to the calendar. I think there are only 3 or 4 right now.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I hope that the association with Gillett is not true. That would amount to being finished before he even got a start.
        • 4 Years Ago
        CP -- That would be more logical based on F1 connections, thanks.
        • 4 Years Ago
        There is a post on the internet from a few months ago that he had already signed to replace Kasey Kahne in the Red Bull car for the 2012 season. I still think its an early April Fool's joke but I think it could be interesting
      • 4 Years Ago
      Kimi will never return to F1, he didn't like being told how to act. Also he won a world championship, he has nothing left to prove there.

      He has a ton of money, I think he's just going out doing what any of us would do if we were rich, just race in everything possible.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Thankfully, for haters, there is no way to tell what series' drivers are 'the best in the world'. So, anybody who wants to make a claim is full of (in this case) merde.

      We (non-haters)all long for production-looking NASCAR cars. It also can't happen. History has shown that one model will have some sort of aero advantage that ruins the competitiveness of the series. Even F1 fans know how much fun it isn't when one team wins every race. Nowadays, they have the anxiety of knowing that any one of 4 drivers could possibly win, and that the 2nd place car might be within 30 seconds of the winner (; Kidding!

      I hope Kimi comes over, but he'd better expect it'll take a long time before he's competitive. If I were him, I'd race midgets, but he'd better plan on racing some ARCA and a lot of Nationwide or Trucks before he makes the big time. I don't know which is 'harder' but I suspect that most top pro series take about the same amount of skill, but those skills will be much different.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Though when has he said he is going to win in the first season. This being rumor my guess is, never?

      "You can't just enter the best team and expect to win, like F1"

      Yes he entered to F1 right from driving focus and won his F1 champ in the first season....
        • 4 Years Ago
        He's not saying he didn't win in F1 his first year. He's saying he DID. He's talking about moving into NASCAR's best team and winning in his first year.

        Juan Pablo Montoya came into NASCAR racing for Chip Ganassi, one of the best race team owners in motorsports. Yet, the only races he won was in NASCAR Sprint Cup's feeder series, the Nationwide Series.
        • 4 Years Ago
        elmo he won the sprint race last year at watkinsglen and in 2007 at sonoma
      • 4 Years Ago
      A quick point to this stupid article, the "Montreal Canadiens (the winningest team in all of professional sports)" fact is so reckless thrown here, that the rest of the post is just good for a laugh.
      The post here takes care of this
      and yes this is true.
      • 4 Years Ago
      um to all u nascar hicks out there .. the most popular car in that stone age sport is what ? um yeah the Monte Carlo named after the famous race .. F1 RACE that is.. also the FIA the runs global sports will not allow nascar to race in Europe & Asia due to that sports awful safety record. If they ( nascar ) was not cheap & used the FIA standards then Dale would probably be alive. Greg Moore a young great racer was killed at the Cali super speed way years ago he hit the wall at an est speed of 286 after the car picked up speed on the grass. He was still alive ! even after that impact he passed on the hospital. This was before the HANS device & that ushered in the device. CART informed NASCAR of this but again they refused due to cost ( cheap b_stards ) and Dale died from a spin/skull issue ..his head almost came off his spine due to the impact. If he was wearing that device he would be alive. That is from the court papers when the maker of the safety equipment sued nascar for blaming him ( B Simpson ) for Dale's death. He won that case hands down by proving nascar was cheap & didn't want to improve or use the most current safety equipment. ...
        • 4 Years Ago
        really? hicks? that was very intelligent start to your comment their buddy.

        first of the hans wasnt unaffordable were talking about NASCAR MAN. it just wasnt mandated, stupid on nascars part, but hey the drivers had a choice. second, go watch elliot sadler hit the barrier wall infront of a s hill/plateau at pocono going over 200 MPH. plus 286 miles an hour is impossible to have happened in indy car, one because the fastest trap speed is 256 at Michigan international speed way. and as far as saftey goes nascar is tops if not the leader in that department, why do you think they have the car they have now and not a modified tubed street car?

      • 4 Years Ago
      It takes too long to master driving in NASCAR. I don't think he's patient enough to make it.

      You can't just enter the best team and expect to win, like F1. He should talk to Juan before deciding.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Do they have April 1 on March 29 in Finland?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Off-topic, but here's what needs to be done to transform NASCAR back into a legitimate motorsport:

      1. use production based cars; the low-cost argument for the stock car is nonsense; Ford and Chevy can supply production based race cars for NASCAR, $100k a pop; this will reduce the costs, not increase them; if needed, these cars can be made to have the same performance figures, the way it is done in GT3/GT4;

      2. admit that racing on an oval is a team sport and adjust the rules accordingly so that the agreements between teams/drivers are public; admit that the driver that finishes first usually does so because he has the most backing from other teams/drivers;

      3. drop the hillbilly commentators and culture surrounding NASCAR; change it from a rural event into something that the rest 80% of the population can stomach.
        • 4 Years Ago
        1. Basing them off production cars has already been explained as being too dangerous. No matter how much safety technology you incorporate into a production-based car, the car will not take a hit to the wall as well as the cars they are using right now.

        2. Please don't base oval racing on just this year's Daytona 500 alone. Hell, even that wasn't a team race. The winner and 2nd place cars were not team mates, at all. Not one team was actually running with each other for more than 2 laps before moving onto another driver to push around the track. If you were to have watched the last couple of races, they had absolutely nothing to do with the word "team". Last Sunday's win by Kevin Harvick at Auto Club Speedway was done all by himself.

        3. Hillbillies DO NOT live in the south. PLEASE do not confuse southerners with hillbillies. They're 2 different people. Anyway, NASCAR's heritage is from the south. It started from moonshine running in the south. Dropping that heritage would be like you forgetting about where YOU came from. What YOUR background is all about.
        • 4 Years Ago

        1. i think they should just have manufactures make the bodies to add on the car the inside (chassis/roll cage) stays the same but you have the body that the manufacturers want. these cars will never be like the street version, thats too risky

        2. the only time you need a teamate to help you in a race physicly are at 2 tracks, daytona and talladega so your proposition for this one makes no sense. tracks like martinsville,california,texas,homestead, you cant bump draft around their if you have the car and the talent its more likley that you will win. and as for old people winning, one thats mark martin works way harder then any formula one driver, this guy could fight in the ufc welterweight thats how fit he is. ( mark martin his abs, FAST FOWARD TOO 3:47 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yLFraOP8Xdo )
      • 4 Years Ago
      To me, nascar is the porn of motorsport.
      once you do it, its hard to get out.

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