When he was told that he had to attend it, he didn’t sport the broadest smile. True to his own spirit, things like social events, media duos do not really matter all that much and do little to add to the ‘Iceman’s’ happiness.
So, obviously, the F1 2018 gala wasn’t going to increase the price of fish in his life. Life for Kimi Raikkonen, a man of few words- is about keeping it simple; going fast inside the car and being light on words and expressions outside it.
But once he was there amid the grandeur and splendour of the 2018 F1 gala, it didn’t seem, even once, that Raikkonen regretted attending the event, which, face it or not, he had no choice to skip.
For the attention of readers and fans who might know, the FIA Awards gala is a yearly event conducted post the completion of every Formula 1 season in a bid to facilitate the best performers across various verticals of motor-sport racing.
It’s a big award presentation ceremony that recognizes the talent of both drivers and teams.
Raikkonen, who stood third on the driver’s standings, despite not being able to finish his final run with the Scuderia in lines with his retirement at the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, was the star attraction at the gala held at St. Petersburg, Russia.
To be fair to Kimi, none of his attention-generating moves was because of his stellar exploits in a car. All of that behind him, Raikkonen, somehow true to his ‘chilled out’ ways appeared in an inebriated state on the stage whilst accepting the trophy for standing third on the standings.
For someone who clearly despises- for the lack of a better word- big media interactions and social soirees- unless they involve close friends, right from the way he emerged on the stage, walking in a breezy manner, standing up next to his former Ferrari teammate, Sebastian Vettel, whom he constantly embraced and perhaps even managed to give a peck on the cheeks ( you have to see the video to believe it), Kimi managed to draw the crowd and united it in laughter and smiles.
In a lighter vein of things, this probably was the unofficial Russian Grand Prix for Kimi, but one minus the hassles of being asked repeatedly mundane questions, driving as a second-rate driver for Ferrari, and being hotting it out on the circuit minus some champagne.
There was none of it, except for some fanfare that truly seemed swayed by Raikkonen’s easy-going and unflustered mannerisms, perhaps one bottle too many adding to the whole fun.
Dressed in impeccably black formals, the charming Iceman didn’t really leave a lot to the imagination at the mega event held at ‘Putin-land’. In an interesting footage of the video, where Lewis Hamilton, now a five-time world champion and inarguably, the finest man on the grid of 2018, is taking to the stage and sharing his thoughts, Raikkonen, captured in the audience, can be found happily lost in his own ‘zone’ holding a cigar in hand as he’s seen seated next to his close friend, Sebastian Vettel.
The yearly event held close to the conclusion of a year is attended by team principals, their partners and also seeks to uphold the performances of those in Rallying, F3, F2, and other motor-racing formats.
It has to be said, as he shared some candid thoughts on his ‘satisfying moment’ at the back of the US GP-win, Raikkonen, it had to be said, took away the icing on the cake with his typically carefree conduct which, perhaps gathered more social media mentions vis-a-vis Hamilton’s dapper avatar in green pants and Sebastian Vettel’s new facial look.
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