LONDON // Kimi Raikkonen, the former world champion, has put himself back in the frame for a Formula One return with Renault, according to Eric Boullier, the team boss. "He is on the radar because he contacted us," the autosport.com website quoted the Frenchman as saying after Sunday's Italian Grand Prix at Monza. Raikkonen won the 2007 title with Ferrari but the Finn has spent the last year in the World Rally Championship after being replaced by the Spaniard Fernando Alonso, winner of the drivers' championship in 2005 and 2006, at the Italian team.
Recent reports have suggested he would stay in rallying with Citroen. "You never know but I will probably never return to Formula One," French newspaper L'Equipe quoted the 30-year-old as saying last month. Renault have yet to announce their second driver for 2011, with only Poland's Robert Kubica confirmed, but have said they are willing to give Vitaly Petrov, the Russian rookie who finished 13th in Monza after scoring points in his three previous races, time to prove himself.
Boullier said Renault have been getting more and more approaches from drivers and Raikkonen was one of them. "We need to think about it. But the priority is Vitaly, and to see how he will develop. "If we are convinced then we will keep him definitely. This is the first option. "There are several other options, and one of them is Kimi." * Reuters