After the rumblings in the Paddock over the weekend that talks between Williams and Raikkonen had broken down we wern’t really expecting to see a return of the 2007 world champion. However this morning Lotus Renault GP have announced they have signed a 2 year deal with the Finn and have released pictures of him in team gear.
We do expect Vitaly Petrov to race alongside him in 2012 but the team could still opt for Bruno Senna (whos put in a real decent showing in the later half of 2011 despite the cars pace) or GP2 Champ Romain Grosjean. Petrov started the season well with a podium in the first round, however his stock has been damaged by the qualifying performance of Bruno Senna coming in halfway through the season. Bruno has been looking at getting a good budget together to race and that surname of his is surely doing no damage to achieving this. Furthermore with Rubuens looking like hes finished and Massa in massive decline he could get a few big name Brazilian sponsors to come along.
Additionally the second seat will now be very sought after as you get to go up against a world champion who hasn’t driven F1 machinery in 2 years. If Kimi isn’t as strong you’ll do well to match him.
This now leaves seats at Williams, Force India and HRT up for grabs for next year as well as the driver queue at Toro Rosso. Silly season has arrived late this year!!