Lopez: Money not a factor for Kimi

Saturday 31-August-2013 08:28

Lotus team owner Gerard Lopez believes Kimi Raikkonen will put performance ahead of money when deciding his future.

Two years after returning to Formula One, the Finn is a hot commodity with several teams reportedly interested in signing him.

While Lotus want to hold onto their driver, Red Bull have expressed an interest while Ferrari are also believed to be considering him for next season.

Raikkonen has so far given no hints as to which way he is leaning.

But according to Lopez, the situation is progressing as it is competitiveness, not money, that Raikkonen wants guarantees about.

"Things are moving on," Lopez told Autosport.

"I said two months ago that as long as he gets what he wants from us - which is technical guarantees from us next year in terms of how close we are with Renault - then there is a high chance he will stay."

Pressed as to Raikkonen's comments earlier this month about "certain issues" relationg to money not being paid, Lopez said: That's not the issue. I think he has some outstanding matters on points [related payments], and that is it.

"His main thing right now is to be sure that next year we are a top team, because there is a major change in terms of technical specifications. He does not want us to be just a customer team.

"We are discussing how to be closer with Renault, in whatever shape it is. That is why the [engine] contract hasn't been signed yet."

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