F1: Raikkonen Contract To Williams In 2012? Rumours Strengthen Photo:
Mike Stevens | Oct, 25 2011 | 0 Comments

Kimi Raikkonen may have now signed a contract to return to F1 with Williams in 2012.

The Finnish daily Ilta-Sanomat reveals that its source is the Monaco-domiciled former Simtek and Footwork driver Taki Inoue, a Japanese who last raced in F1 in 1995.

Inoue is apparently still well connected in F1 circles, given his efforts to advance the careers of several rising Japanese drivers.

Earlier this month, Ilta-Sanomat reported that the key to Raikkonen's return to Formula One was whether Williams could sign the Qatar National Bank as a major new sponsor.

Brazilian journalist Livio Oricchio wrote in O Estado de S.Paulo last Friday: "In recent days Frank Williams travelled to Arab states Qatar and Saudi Arabia."

The beleaguered British team rose to the front of the grid some decades ago with Arab-linked sponsors including Saudia, TAG and Albilad.



Bernie Ecclestone wants Max Mosley back

The F1 chief executive told Germany's Welt am Sonntag newspaper that he wants Mosley back in the chair of the FIA presidency. He admitted that coming out in opposition to his long-time fellow F1 powerbroker amid the 2008 scandal ranks among his biggest ever regrets.

"One of the worst things I've done in my life - and for which I am ashamed - is to not defend Max Mosley when he had his big problems. There's no excuse," said Ecclestone.

The 80-year-old is referring to his call for Mosley to step down as pressure rose in the wake of the then FIA president's sex scandal involving sadomasochism and prostitutes.

"I made the mistake because so many people - executives and decision-makers from big companies and banks - convinced me that Max must go in the circumstances," Ecclestone explained.

He said his own opinion of the sex affair was that it was "purely private" and "nothing to do with Formula One".

"But I was influenced very strongly and badly not to support him. I have apologised personally to Max and also publicly before the FIA World Council," added the Briton.

The FIA is now headed by former Ferrari boss Jean Todt, and it is known that Ecclestone is not a fan.

"I have nothing against the present incumbent, Jean Todt, but I would welcome Max's return," insisted Ecclestone.



FIA moves even harder to stop diffuser blowing

The FIA is moving to clamp down even harder on the aerodynamic use of exhaust gases ahead of the 2012 season.

F1's governing body had already announced the end of the so-called 'blown diffuser' era by dictating the positioning of the exhausts and limiting the allowable off-throttle engine maps for 2012.

But Italy's Autosprint reports that, following fears the new rules could also have been exploited by teams, the FIA has "turned the screw" even tighter.

The Paris federation has reportedly said that the 2012 version of the software to electronically control the engine will be "even more limited" than was previously expected.

Williams' new chief engineer Mark Gillan is quoted as saying: "I don't think I've ever seen a year when there were no loopholes in the technical regulations.

"That is one of the most enjoyable aspects of our work -- to seek out areas in which the rules are vague and can be exploited."



Chandhok tells F1 to take care in India

Karun Chandhok has advised F1's travelling circus to take care this week in India.

Some team bosses recently played down fears about 'Delhi belly', but Team Lotus reserve driver Chandhok - a brand ambassador and also a consultant of the new Buddh circuit - has admitted some caution will be necessary.

He told the Swiss newspaper Blick: "The Indian culture will be a shock to many.

"It is organised chaos, maybe like a mixture of Brazil and Malaysia. It affects everything -- the traffic, the food, our way of life. We are very loud, chaotic.

"From the moment you arrive you will experience this madness, which will surprise everyone but it also means India is a country with soul.

"Nothing is structured -- if someone says 12.30, he means 1 or 2 o'clock. So then you could think of Italy," he laughed.

Veteran Blick correspondent Roger Benoit asked Chandhok how F1's travellers should prepare for their forthcoming adventure.

"Many will get vaccinated, yes, but you definitely need to be careful with food," he answered.

"Only drink bottled water, don't use ice, don't eat salad. Only eat cooked food. This should mean you won't have problems."


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