Kimi Raikkonen says it was a “quite straightforward” decision to extend his Formula 1 season and continue with Alfa Romeo for 2021.

The Finn, 41, is set to embark on a remarkable 19th F1 season next year alongside Antonio Giovinazzi, with Alfa Romeo opting to keep an unchanged driver line-up for the third successive season.

Raikkonen has already broken Rubens Barrichello’s record for most grand prix starts this year and will continue to stretch that benchmark out further with up to 23 races expected on the 2021 calendar.

“I don’t think it was anything difficult,” Raikkonen explained. “We signed it yesterday. You keep asking always about the future but if we haven’t signed anything, I wouldn’t start lying either way.

“There was many aspects from the team’s side, on what they want to do, and what I want to do, and obviously there’s other things in a life that you need to look into.

“But in the end it made sense from my side and obviously for their side, and once we started to talk about it, it wasn’t such a long process. So it was quite straightforward in the end.”

Alfa Romeo has endured a difficult 2020 season and currently lies eighth in the constructors’ championship, having been stuck towards the back of the grid battling the likes of Haas and Williams.

Raikkonen, who has scored two of Alfa Romeo’s five points so far this season, is hopeful of the team’s fortunes improving in 2021.

“As a team none of us are happy where we are but unfortunately this is the situation right now and the aim is to improve and be a lot better off,” he added.

“But there is no guarantee on anything so we have to simply do a better job overall and hopefully next year we’ll be a bit happier with things and be where we expect to be.”

 

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