Finances and certain other issues kept Kimi out of McLaren

Kimi Raikkonen will be off rallying next year after finances and “certain other issues” prevented him from signing a deal with McLaren.

Having left Ferrari a year early, Raikkonen had targeted McLaren as a potential employer for next year’s Championship, stating that he would only race for a team capable of winning grands prix and World titles.

However, the Finn failed to reach an agreement with the Woking team, with his manager Steve Robertson revealing that money had been one of the issues.

Raikkonen was reportedly asking for the same salary he earned with Ferrari, even though the Scuderia would have paid him half of that anyway if he signed with another team.

Money, though, wasn’t the only sticking point as Robertson revealed there were also “certain other issues” that he would not divulge that put an end to Raikkonen heading back to Woking.

“We had many meetings with McLaren but we couldn’t find common ground on certain issues, and that is the reason he will not be racing in Formula One next year,” he told Sky Sports News.

“Obviously, financial (issues) were part of it, but there were certain other issues that I can’t really go into that didn’t enable us to do a deal with McLaren.

“Kimi feels that McLaren offered him the best chance to win the races and compete for the championship next year.

“He didn’t feel another team that’s available out there gives him that same opportunity.

“Kimi doesn’t have to do anything – he’s financially secure, he can pick and choose what he does, and he didn’t feel that outside of McLaren, the other teams that were available could give him the same opportunity.”

Meanwhile, in an interview with the BBC, David Robertson, the other half of Raikkonen’s management team, confirmed rumours that Raikkonen would be switching to rallying.

“He’s going to go rallying instead,” he said, adding that Raikkonen “wants to be back in F1 in 2011 but with all the money he has earned he doesn’t want to go in a medium-type team for money.

“The same criteria would apply as this year – he’d only go where he feels he has a chance of the World Championship.”

Asked whether 2009 World Champion Jenson Button’s availability on the market had played a role in Raikkonen not joining McLaren, he said: “If they hadn’t gone for Jenson, they’d have gone for someone else.”

Robertson also revealed that Raikkonen is not at all broken up about the temporary suspension of his F1 career. “He’s one of those guys who moves on quickly – he just said ‘now we concentrate on rallying’.”


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