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Kimi Raikkonen

Raikkonen bows out of F1 with 'Driver of the Day' award

Kimi Raikkonen might not have made it to the finishing line of his last F1 race, but the Finn still walked away with a final accolade.

Raikkonen Saudi
To news overview © RN365/MichaelPotts

Kimi Raikkonen ended his final race in F1 by winning the 'Driver of the Day' award.

The Finn's retirement from the sport began earlier than expected after technical problems forced him to pull into the garage before half distance had been reached in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

However, this didn't stop the fans from voting him as their top driver of the event, with Raikkonen securing 42.8 percent of the vote ahead of Sergio Perez on 21.5 percent.

End result "didn't matter"

A brake issue brought Raikkonen's 349-race Formula 1 career to an early end, but the Alfa Romeo driver admits he wasn't too upset about this.

"Sometimes in the sport it goes like that," Raikkonen told Sky Sports.

"There was some issue with the wheel nut, and I had a small moment already on the lap before in Turn 5, and then it just let go in Turn 7.

"But it's a part of [the] game and honestly, the end result didn't matter whatsoever to me."

Raikkonen is now keen to enjoy his time away from the sport with his family.

"Honestly, I'm happy," the Iceman said. "I'm looking forward to the normal life that we know from outside of the race weekends.

"Always at home, I spend time with family, and we can actually plan something. It's hard to plan when we are doing this work, because things change quickly here and if you plan, usually it's all... You can forget everything.

"I think it's great to have the freedom, and be at home with the kids. They grow up quickly, and [I can be with] the wife, and I'm looking forward [to it]."

Farewells all round at Alfa Romeo

It wasn't just Raikkonen bowing out from Formula 1 at Alfa Romeo, with teammate Antonio Giovinazzi also leaving the sport after losing his seat to rookie Guanyu Zhou for 2022.

Like Raikkonen, Giovinazzi suffered an early exit from the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. The Italian will now compete in Formula E, though hopes to have another opportunity in F1 in the future.

"I want to think positive, that I don't feel that this will be my last race in F1," Giovinazzi explained.

Giovinazzi also paid tribute to Raikkonen, adding: "We will not find another Kimi in F1, I'm sure."

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