Antonio Giovinazzi spoke about his text exchange with Kimi Raikkonen over New Year, and the Finn was reportedly getting a bit of a tan…
The Italian revealed the former Alfa Romeo team-mates were in contact with each other towards the end of 2021, while the former World Champion was taking some well-deserved down time after retiring from Formula 1.
Giovinazzi acknowledged that Raikkonen is not the best at replying to messages at the best of times, but that he found time to quip that he was trying to tan and make himself look more like his former colleague.
“I sent him a message at New Year’s Eve to wish him a good New Year,” Giovinazzi told the Italian edition of Motorsport.com. “Now Kimi doesn’t normally have a good relationship with his phone, let alone when he’s on holiday in the Maldives.
“But after a few days, he contacted me and we made some jokes back and forth. For instance, he told me that he had got a good tan.
“He described it as Italian-style tan and said he was also thinking of growing his hair out, to get even more Italian-style!”
Giovinazzi is now Ferrari’s reserve driver and will also act as a substitute for Alfa Romeo and Haas should he be needed, and he made a disappointing start to his Formula E career in Diriyah – as he himself expected to begin with – running at the back throughout the first round in Saudi Arabia, as he gets to grips with his new machinery.
He has said on multiple occasions that he aims to get back onto the Formula 1 grid as soon as possible, and he hopes to put himself in the shop window and emulate others who have spent a year on the sidelines before making a return.
“It is the main objective for 2023. I left a parenthesis open, I don’t feel I gave everything in that championship,” Giovinazzi told La Gazzetta dello Sport.
“We have seen in the past that several have managed to come back, like Albon, like Ocon, like myself after the two races in 2017. Anything is possible.
“In 2022 there are a lot of contracts expiring, so the hopes are there. If then there is no possibility we will see: first of all how it will go in Formula E, and then there’s the [World Endurance Championship] Hypercar programme with Ferrari, which I’m very interested in.”
Kimi Raikkonen hailed as the ‘complete package’
Antonio Giovinazzi believes that Kimi Räikkönen is the whole package in terms of race management.