LeClerc Moves To Ferrari, Kimi Goes In Opposite Direction.
Today, rather expectedly even when considering the 90,000 fans whom signed a online petition to keep Kimi, Ferrari confirmed that Charles LeClerc will indeed continue his rapid growth replacing the Raikkonen for next season honouring the late Sergio Marchionne final wishes. More surprisingly is the destination of the man he is replacing, who, has signed a two-year deal with Sauber returning him to the team which gave him his first shot at F1 when the Finn was just 21.
From a Ferrari perspective this move is extremely positive showing a willingness to put faith in a driver who has shown great potential in the junior categories and brief season in F1. LeClerc will become the youngest Ferrari man since 1961 in many ways hinting at the clear change in attitude over recent year's of the age a driver is ready to be put in a championship winning car. Hopefully this will give Ferrari a new lease of life going into next season to improve the consistency of their title challenge both in the Drivers and Constructors Championship.
For Raikkonen on the other hand I'm stuck in two minds. Yes it will be great to see the former World Champion remain in the sport and help improve Sauber's on track performance, relationships with Ferrari as well as mentor whatever driver Sauber pair him up with but to see an F1 driver in the modern era at 40 years old (2020 season, when his contract runs out) just doesn't sit right with me. No-one can race forever, unfortunately, as great that it is that his passion remains in the sport shown by his improvement in form this season I fear that Kimi might have decided to go one more year too far.