I have always kind of favored Finnish racing drivers. Not in the “lost weekend in the Reeperbahn” sense of the word, but rather in the “its a contest and you have to root for someone” sense. As a species they are fearless, unbelievably quick, and extremely funny. Kimi Raikkonen is the current ace in my beloved Grand Prix racing (there is a also Finnish rookie, but on one race not worth mentioning) and he happens to be piloting for Team Lotus this year. Unsurprisingly, this suits me.

Kimmi is the most perfect Lotus driver for the modern era. The team itself is one of those only favored by real car guys, (Williams being the other). He seems to have tremendous results on a small budget, he is quirky, and if he has an opinion on something, he delivers it as bluntly as only a Finn can. Kimi makes few mistakes, never publicly criticizes the team, and has never caused drama like, say, a Lewis Hamilton. He is laid back, loves a cocktail (they were flowing in the Lotus garage exactly 11 minutes after the flag today), and seems to prefer the company of his team and his friends to the public.

He is also, shatteringly quick.

As quick as he can be, he will mostly (unfairly?) be remembered for a series of extremely funny one-liners. For example, on his way to his first victory of the year in 2012, he interrupted a well meaning engineer mid-race by telling him “leave me alone-I know what I’m doing”. And he did.

At the end of the year last year he bemoaned a third place finish in the championship standings because he only cared about winning, and if he was third, he still had to go to the awards banquet (something every other driver on the grid would kill for). Or this year where EVERY other driver in qualifying for the Australian Grand Prix was grateful for the postponement of qualifying due to monsoon conditions, Kimi was irritated. It meant he couldn’t sleep in on race day (astonishing in a driver)…

Team Lotus Renault should hope for such conditions more often…

Well, old Kimi positively left them for dead today, and after the usual blather from the engineer, Kimi’s latest: “…see? I told you it was a good car…”

Here’s hoping.