Kimi Raikkonen liked to keep to himself in the F1 paddock but Jenson Button reveals that he was a different character outside of it.
Raikkonen has been one of F1’s biggest personalities throughout his career. The 2007 World Champion left Formula 1 after the culmination of the 2021 season. The last three years of his career were relatively quiet, as he fought at the back of the grid, driving for Alfa Romeo Racing.
Raikkonen didn’t express himself much on track and preferred to focus just on driving. However, according to former World Champion Jenson Button, the Finn was a completely different personality away from F1.
Button called Raikkonen the ‘life of a party’ and highlighted how energetic he was. His ‘Iceman’ persona was reserved only for those viewing him inside the world of Formula 1. In an interview with Sky Sports, Button recalled a moment where the ex-Ferrari driver unexpectedly showed up at his house.
We love the Drunk Kimi!!! 😂❤️❤️❤️ pic.twitter.com/VNBFmGzZk9
— Kimi Räikkönen #bwoah (@Kimi7iceman) December 10, 2018
“We didn’t really talk in the paddock. But when you went outside the paddock, when the sun went down, things changed,” said Button.
“The only story I can really remember with Kimi, because most of them are a blur, we were out until like 3am in London and I had a house at that point.
“And I was like ‘I’m tired, I’m out of here’. Got in the cab, get home, walk in my house, and Kimi is sat in my living room, alone, I have no idea how he got there.”
Kimi Raikkonen admits he has no idea why Formula 1 fans like him so much
Raikkonen’s open distaste towards appearing in front of the media was something F1 fans appreciated. Today, cameras follow the drivers everywhere and to keep fans engaged, they take part in interviews and segments throughout the course of a campaign.
The former McLaren driver also took part in these ‘segments’ but didn’t say much. He only spoke whatever was asked of him, and often answered questions with brutal honesty.
His personality and style of dealing with the media is one of the reasons why fans will miss his presence on the grid. However, he admits that he does not understand why the F1 fans like him so much.
— Alfa Romeo F1 Team ORLEN (@alfaromeoorlen) December 12, 2021
“I don’t know why they like me. Maybe because I am what I am. Consistently odd or weird, or whatever you want to call it!” said Raikkonen.
“It’s normal for me, but for outside, maybe not for everybody. But I’ve done it exactly on my own terms, most of the way anyway.”