Raikkonen exit could cost Lotus sponsors

Kimi Raikkonen's departure is a "terrible loss" for Lotus, and could cost the Enstone based team some sponsorship.

That is the view of former F1 driver Mika Salo, referring to fellow Finn Raikkonen's decision to switch to Ferrari next year, apparently for money reasons.

"Kimi's move is a terrible loss for Lotus," Salo told the MTV3 broadcaster.

"His market value is much higher than Grosjean's, so they (Lotus) will probably have some explaining to do to the sponsors."

On the other hand, there have been rumours Raikkonen's Lotus exit could also spell trouble for Ferrari.

Salo, however, said he spoke with a high-ranking Ferrari official in Singapore and asked him about those rumours.

"I asked quite directly if Alonso is going to leave, and he said he is not," said the 46-year-old, who in 1999 filled in at Ferrari for an injured Michael Schumacher.

(GMM)

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