How young Kimi defeated Ralph SchumacherMarch 1, 2019
The latest edition of the Finnish sports publication Iltalehti Urheilu is largely dedicated to Kimi Raikkonen – the portrait of the driver is on the front page of the cover, and one of the main materials of the number is the memories of Kalle Jokinen, a former mechanic Kimi.
Kalle worked with him in 1997-1998, when the young Raikkonen also performed in European karting competitions, and even then it was clear that the guy had a real racing talent.
Among the stories told by Yokinen is a funny incident that occurred in the spring of 1997 in Monaco. 17-year-old Kimi played in the race for the Monaco Karting Cup, but at the same time he managed to beat Ralph Schumacher, although not on the real track, but on the virtual one.
Here is how it was. Ralph is four years older than Kimi, and that season he made his debut in Formula 1 with Jordan.
“There was a slot machine with some kind of Formula 1 simulator,” says Jokinen. “Ralph had a lot of one franc coins, he threw them into the machine gun and drove off. He probably updated all the records and became the author of the ten best circles.
Kimi stood nearby, watched and waited for Ralph to play, then took his place, and I threw one coin at the machine. And Kimi immediately drove the circle, showing absolutely the best time!
In general, in those years, young Raikkonen handled with any technique with amazing dexterity – he very quickly drove a quad bike, a cross-country bike, a snowmobile and even a lawn mower. As soon as the opportunity arose, Kimi was ready to shine, and I did not see anyone who would give himself up to racing with such passion! “
Kalle Jokinen still maintains friendly relations with Kimi – a former racing mechanic and a Formula 1 star are still friendly and occasionally communicate.
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