Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen has revealed that he could quit F1 at the end of next season and that he is considering a switch to the World Rally Championship.
Raikkonen will make his debut in the WRC on the Neste Oil Rally Finland this week when he swaps his Ferrari F1 car for a Fiat Grande Punto Super 2000 - the same spec car as will be driven by Anton Alen.
The Finn, who took the runners-up spot in Hungary on Sunday, finishing 11.5 seconds behind Lewis Hamilton's McLaren-Mercedes, will be co-driven by the experienced Kaj Lindstrom, who formerly partnered multiple world rally champion Tommi Makinen.
"Yes definitely," Raikkonen replied on Thursday when asked if he could compete in the WRC again and if he might consider a future career in rallying. "I am still in F1 and still have one more year on my contract but everything is open and it is nice to be a part of it here. I am a bit too young to do nothing so I will see."
"It all depends on which way F1 is going. Nobody is exactly sure how it will be. I am in no hurry."
Asked if he will do any other World Rally Championship events next year, Raikkonen added that nothing has been decided, but time permitting, it is possible.
"I don't know, if I have the time then maybe," he continued. "I like learning different things so if I have no testing, and the time, then I will do more rallies. I enjoy it and there is no harm in it."
"I asked [Ferrari boss] Luca di Montezemolo first if it was okay [to do Rally Finland], but because Fiat has a Super 2000 car it was an easy choice. He knew I was interested so he let me do something in my spare time."
As for this weekend, the Finn noted that he is really looking forward to the event and making his debut on gravel.
"I have been here a few times but this is the first time I have seen the roads. They look very nice and we will see how it goes tomorrow," he continued. "But this is definitely an excellent rally and good experience for me. It looks like the weather will also be good so everything is ready for a great event."
"I think competing on gravel will be more normal for me [than the other rallies I have done on snow and asphalt]. The roads are a bit faster than on snow and the grip is good and the roads are a bit wider so we will see how we can do. We will try to finish the rally. I don't know if we can win it or not but we will have fun!"
"The pacenotes however are the crucial thing. They are really important for you to go fast and it is something completely different to what I am used to. All the top guys here drive at similar speeds and the notes make a big difference."
"It just takes time to learn and sometimes you get it wrong and it is not easy to know exactly where to go on the jumps. Hopefully we have the right notes and we shall have some fun, but I am responsible for the right notes."
"[Overall] I just hope to get to the finish and match the same speeds as the other guys in my group."