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Ferrari retains Raikkonen for 2018 season

22 Agosto 2017

But he does a job for Ferrari and, with no obvious better option for that support role, retaining him makes sense for a team with an inherently conservative approach to the driver market.

Vettel, 30, is out of contract at Ferrari at the end of the year.

Congratulations, fans of mumbling weirdo in Formula One: Kimi Räikkönen is staying at Ferrari, reports Racer.

Although Romain Grosjean and Haas have proven to be a match made in heaven, the Frenchman was one of the names linked to a seat with Ferrari next season. He has yet to win a race since returning to Ferrari, finishing on the podium 11 times in 70 races over the past four years.

Raikkonen's signature comes after he chased home Sebastian Vettel in a dominant Ferrari display in the Hungarian Grand Prix in his most recent outing.

Haas enjoys a close relationship with the Italian manufacturer, and it was plausible that it could further that relationship by loaning Grosjean to Ferrari in exchange for a discount on their power units.

Speaking about the potential for a future deal with Raikkonen at the time, Marchionne had said: "I think Kimi has got to show a higher level of commitment to the process".

Raikkonen has enjoyed two spells at Ferrari during his career, including the one that secured him his world championship title in 2007. Finnish newspaper Ilta Sanomat has since reported that the delay is because he only wants a one-year deal. With Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen locked into at least one more year each with Red Bull, the top three teams should look exactly the same come the season opener next year.

Vettel, who won the last grand prix in Hungary before the summer break, leads Raikkonen by 86 points in the drivers' championship, while his gap to second-place Hamilton extended to 14 points ahead of this weekend's Belgian Grand Prix.

Ferrari retains Raikkonen for 2018 season