Kimi Raikkonen, the 2007 World Champion, has been at centre of attention, ever since his F1 career began. Whether it be napping before his debut, swearing on live international TV, unfazed by rivals, or plain irritation with his Team, the Finn hides nothing.
Although uncomfortable in press conferences and interviews, Kimi, has become a media darling over the years.
Always seen fidgeting in the after race conferences, and trying to hide himself behind his cap, the Finn, answers everything with the minimum of words, generally in a monotonous mumble. One of the most talented drivers on track, the Iceman is known for his off track leisure activities and blunt replies.
The liquor happy Raikkonen, who is popular for his drinking antics, has over the years had many a episodes that have culminated into his iconic image.
Here, Naman Sharma remembers the top seven episodes, of the 2007 World Champion:
7) Napping Debut
Most athletes, just before their debut, are seen focussing, praying, exercising, strategising, or checking their kits. Well, not Kimi.
His widely publicised debut, given he had only 23 races as experience and yet, had been granted a Super-License, was widely debated.
Instead of being bothered by all the eyes on him, right before his maiden GP, Raikkonen decided to take a nap. Sleeping comfortably under a table in the Sauber Garage, he was woken up 30 minutes before the race to get ready and settled.
6) Retiring....to the Yacht
After moving up to second on the track, a heat shield failure forced Kimi to retire from the Monaco GP, 2006.
The Finn, in typical fashion, parked his car on the sides, and with his helmet still on, walked along the sidewalk and to the harbour....where his Yacht was docked.
Well talk about kicking back after work.
5) Pre-Race Bowel Movements
Ahead of the 2006 Brazilian GP, Raikkonen missed a Presentation Ceremony by Football Legend Pele.
When an interviewer caught up with him, and asked the reason for his presence, Kimi had a very human reason, on Live TV.
Reporter Martin Brundle: "Kimi, you missed the presentation by Pele."
Kimi : "Yeah."
Martin: "Will you get over it?"
Kimi: "Yeah. I was having a shit."
Martin: "Obviously, you have a nice, light car on the grid then."
4) You make your own Way
How do you get lost when you have only one way to go? Well, here's how:
Brazil 2012 and Kimi was having a below par race, fighting at the end of the points position.
A mistake forced Kimi to go off track and take the service road. Although saving the car from stalling or crashing, Kimi did not try to join the track immediately and instead continued down the service road, believing it connects to the track.
But a locked gate forced Kimi to make a proper hand brake u-turn and revert his path. The Iceman rejoined the track, lower in the field and then fought to claim the last points position.
The video of his lost-adventures went viral on the Internet, and generated many memes.
3) Gorilla Race
A week before his big Ferrari debut, Raikkonen took part in a Motorboat race, at the Finnish harbour. If this was not enough, Kimi and his partner-friends, had dressed up in Gorilla Suits.
When asked about the event, the Iceman said:
"Yeah, but was it really me? You don't know."
The team later won the award for the 'Best Costume'.
2) Party Like a Rockstar
The Iceman is notorious for his partying style. In 2005 he was at the front page of tabloids, having been kicked out of a Club for indecent behaviour.
A year before that, he was pictured collapsed on a pavement in Spain, drunk and clutching an inflatable rubber Dolphin.
1) Leave Me Alone
Well, the newest addition to the Raikkonen moments, and definitely the funniest.
When leading the Abu Dhabi GP 2012, the Lotus pit crew, anxious to secure their maiden GP victory, repeated the regular technical procedures for a driver.
The Iceman, though, unimpressed, shouted back this:
"Yes, yes, yes, I'm doing all that. You don't have to remind me every second."
When further instructions arrived: "Leave me alone. I know what I'm doing."
The dialogues have since then, become a folklore for F1 fans and members alike.
Other memorable moments of Kimi include:
- the snowboarding accident a week before his Ferrari debut. F1 drivers are prohibited by contract to participate in such sports.
- his fall outside the German paddock in 2012
- failing to land on his feet after jumping off the first deck of a yacht
- Claiming 'Sergio Perez' needs to be punched in the face, after he collided with him
- Snubbing interviewers
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