The 2010 F1 season hasn’t even started yet, and already we have the first driver line-up speculation for 2011! What the?!

And it features none other than … Kimi Raikkonen!

According to latest rumour, the 2007 champion’s connection with Red Bull – as a result of the Finn now competing under its sponsorship banner in the World Rally Championship – means he will be in line to replace Mark Webber at the Red Bull Racing team for the 2012 season.

Right? Not so, says Red Bull co-founder Dietrich Mateschitz.

"That is pure speculation, nothing more," Mateschitz told Germany’s Salzburger Nachrichten when asked about this latest gossip. "We do not know what Kimi wants to do in a year from now. We do have a close relationship with him, though, so of course that generates speculation."

Furthermore, Mateschitz added that Red Bull Racing may not want to replace Mark Webber after the Australian’s current contract runs out at the end of the season. "If Webber is fast and sufficiently motivated, we can’t just thank him for his top performances and then give Raikkonen his cockpit," Dietrich concluded.

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.