Ferrari To Pay Off Kimi. Reports Emerge. Spain Rejoices!

MONTE CARLO, MONACO - DECEMBER 07:  In this handout image provided by FIA, (L-R) Formula One Drivers Kimi R?ikk?nen and Fernando Alonso with FOM President Bernis Ecclestone at the 2007 FIA Gala Prize Giving Ceremony held at the Salle des Etoiles Sporting Club on December 7, 2007 in Monte Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by FIA via Getty Images)
Mike WilkinsCorrespondent IAugust 14, 2009

Funny thing this photo.

Bernie slipping Kimi his big payoff ? Nando in the wings waiting in line for his Ferrari contract? 2010?

Nope. 2009.

Reports are now emerging that Ferrari are now ready to offer Kimi the 'Big Bucks' to go off to rally Fiats permanently.

The reports come via SKY Sports via The Sun (I know I know) but they are saying that sources from within the team that he will be offered the full value of his existing contract as a payoff to vacate his seat at the end of this season, to enable Fernando to get his Ferrari drive a year early.

This does all make sense with Santander becoming the main sponsor for Ferrari next season. 25 million euros not to drive...? To one of the worlds biggest banking groups, it's a drop in the ocean, especially to get their Spanish Matador in their car.

Assuming this is correct, and I know that it's been long mooted, where does that leave Renault F1?

Massa will be back next season in the Scarlet car, so that's a team and a half. And no, I don't think Alonso will demand number 1 status, I don't subscribe to that at all, he's good enough to take on and beat any team-mate.

Renault will take back Kovi and probably have Grosjean as number 2, allowing McLaren to sign Rosberg, and that leaves a nice space for Senna somewhere...... like alongside Toyota ...oops I mean Nakajima at Williams?

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