Raikkonen linked with Ferrari seat

The Schumacher rumours began after the Turkish Grand Prix in Istanbul last week. Their "logic" then cast the winner Raikkonen as his replacement. But one has to question why either would actually want to move.

Schumacher has won five of his seven world championships while racing with the Scuderia (the others coming with Benetton in 1994 and '95). The 2005 season will be the first of the new millennium in which he has not been crowned champion. Though Ferrari have had an appalling year, 90 per cent of their problems have been tyre -related, and Schumacher is astute enough to know they will recover.

Raikkonen only lost the 2003 title with McLaren after the sport's governing body, the FIA, decided on a retrospective reinterpretation of its own rule regarding tyre wear which switched things in Bridgestone's favour as Michelin were hurriedly obliged to change their design just before the Italian Grand Prix at Monza in September, thus losing ground at a critical stage of the championship fight.

His disappointing season was last year, but McLaren have not looked back since. Their MP4/20 is the fastest car in the field, but is lacking in reliability and has probably cost the Finn this year's crown.

If the issue centred only on current form, rather than form two years hence, Schumacher would step into the best car again, while Raikkonen would give up the best car.

Rumours have linked Raikkonen with Ferrari for several years, but yesterday his manager Steve Robertson dismissed them. "These stories have come to light again after all the rumours about Michael and Mercedes-Benz. People are just making assumptions; Michael is going there, so Kimi must be replacing him."

In fact, McLaren have not been averse in the past to running two stars, having matched Alain Prost with Niki Lauda in the early 1980s and Ayrton Senna with Prost later that decade.

"It's just speculation," Robertson continued. "Kimi is not happy with the reliability at McLaren this year. He is happy with the speed of the package at his disposal, but he knows he should be leading the world championship. He has a contract with McLaren until the end of 2006, so we'll wait and see what happens then."

BMW will require the best driver they can get by 2007, and Toyota must surely seek soon to replace Ralf Schumacher with a topline racer who can help move them forward.

It does seem likely, however, that Michael Schumacher is seeking an extension to his contract with Ferrari. The latest speculation may simply be shrewdly placed talk designed to drive his price up further, though it remains to be seen whether Ferrari can still afford him, as their purse strings are already seriously stretched.

News
Alan Bennett has criticised the “repellent” reality shows which dominate our screens
tvBut he does like Stewart Lee
Life and Style
The Google Doodle celebrating the start of the first day of autumn, 2014.
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Sheridan Smith as Cilla Black and Ed Stoppard as her manager Brian Epstein
tvCilla Episode 2 review: Grit under the glamour in part two of biopic series starring Sheridan Smith
Sport
David Moyes and Louis van Gaal
football
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
i100
Life and Style
Vote with your wallet: the app can help shoppers feel more informed about items on sale
lifeNew app reveals political leanings of food companies
News
Former Governor of Alaska Sarah Palin, left, with her daughter, Bristol
newsShe's 'proud' of eldest daughter, who 'punched host in the face'
Sport
New Zealand fly-half Aaron Cruden pictured in The Zookeeper's Son on a late-night drinking session
rugby
Arts and Entertainment
Salmond told a Scottish television chat show in 2001that he would also sit in front of a mirror and say things like,
tvCelebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Life and Style
Carol O'Brien, whose son Rob suffered many years of depression
healthOne mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
Arts and Entertainment
The cover of Dark Side of the Moon
musicCan 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition? See for yourself
Life and Style
food + drink
News
Rob Merrick's Lobby Journalists were playing Ed Balls' Labour Party MPs. The match is an annual event which takes place ahead of the opening of the party conference
newsRob Merrick insistes 'Ed will be hurting much more than me'
News
A cabin crew member photographed the devastation after one flight
news
Voices
A new app has been launched that enables people to have a cuddle from a stranger
voicesMaybe the new app will make it more normal to reach out to strangers
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Secret politics of the weekly shop

The politics of the weekly shop

New app reveals political leanings of food companies
Beam me up, Scottie!

Beam me up, Scottie!

Celebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Beware Wet Paint: The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition

Beware Wet Paint

The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition
Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Can 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition?
Sanctuary for the suicidal

Sanctuary for the suicidal

One mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits