Kimi Raikkonen anticipating ‘simpler’ NASCAR outing after Virginia take a look at : PlanetF1

Kimi Raikkonen headed Stateside for his first laps in a present technology NASCAR forward of his Cup Collection debut.

The 2007 Method 1 World Champion has had a quiet 2022 thus far, having determined to go away Method 1 behind after 20 years on the finish of final season.

However Raikkonen hasn’t been ready to withstand the decision of a cockpit for very lengthy, with Trackhouse Racing tempting the Finn out of retirement to participate within the Cup Collection race at Watkins Glen on August 21.

The race is a part of a brand new initiative being rolled out by Trackhouse, which is named ‘Challenge 91’ – the intent being to present worldwide racing drivers the possibility to take part on the highest stage in NASCAR.

Watkins Glen is the primary, and solely deliberate, outing for 2022, with Raikkonen being particularly sought out by Trackhouse boss Justin Marks for the inaugural likelihood.

Additionally becoming a member of Raikkonen in making his Cup Collection debut is DTM Audi racer Mike Rockenfeller, who will take part with Spire Motorsports.

Kimi Raikkonen concludes driver orientation

Raikkonen flew to the USA this week, collaborating in a driver orientation take a look at on the Virginia Worldwide Raceway street course on Thursday. Trackhouse posted loads of photographs and movies to their social media accounts, displaying a targeted Raikkonen on observe, training pit stops, and speaking to engineers.

Raikkonen was on the wheel of a Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 take a look at automotive, however should wait till the Watkins Glen weekend to get his first shot within the race-spec NASCAR he’ll really be racing.

“I don’t have something to check however I believe it was good to get some laps, even when it’s not precisely the identical automotive that we’re going to race,” Raikkonen stated afterward.

“It was very helpful simply to place laps [in] and have some enjoyable, and know what the automotive is considerably doing, do longer runs to seek out out so I’m positive it’ll be simpler to enter observe come the race [weekend].”

Raikkonen has dabbled with NASCAR prior to now, having taken half within the Truck collection throughout his F1 hiatus in 2011, however stated that have was largely irrelevant at this level over 10 years later.

NASCAR - Kimi Raikkonen drives for Kyle Busch Motorsport at Charlotte in 2011.

“Clearly, I’ve somewhat expertise with the Cup automotive from 2011,” he defined.

This automotive is a brand new technology automotive, it’s quite a bit nicer. I suppose kind of what I anticipated. I attempted the simulator so I had some thought – it’s OK. Clearly, the identical issues occur to it as a standard automotive, so when the tyres get scorching you’re sliding extra.

“Up to now it’s been good.”

Raikkonen returns to NASCAR

With the Finn sitting out the 2010 and 2011 F1 seasons, a part of his motorsport dabbling on the time was collaborating in a race weekend at Charlotte Motor Speedway within the NASCAR Nationwide Collection and the Tenting World Truck Collection.

Neither went notably effectively, with Raikkonen ending twenty seventh within the Nationwide race and coming dwelling fifteenth within the Tenting race. Racing with Kyle Busch Motorsports, and sponsored by ‘Perky Jerky’, that weekend is maybe greatest remembered for Raikkonen’s indignant, and fixed, radio messages about wanting a water bottle and complaining about how small the bottles had been!

With F1 now firmly behind him and Raikkonen but to determine his subsequent profession transfer, the Finn stated he feels rather more ready heading to Watkins Glen after collaborating within the orientation and utilizing the simulator – he hasn’t pushed a racing automotive in anger since Abu Dhabi final season.

“Perhaps we did 50 laps or one thing,” he stated.

“With out these and the simulator, for positive I’d be going straight into 20 minutes observe, after which qualifying, and that might be a lot more durable.

“Not less than we ready in addition to we might, so due to NASCAR letting us have these laps, we did the most effective that we might and most that we will, so we’ll see what we get. Clearly, it’s a brand new observe for me, so I have to be taught it, so we’ll see what we have now.”

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