Raikkonen only hoped for 'one or two years' in F1 ahead of milestone race

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Kimi Raikkonen admits he never expected to be in Formula 1 for more than a couple of years ahead of a major milestone this weekend in Russia.

The 2007 world champion moves into solo third in the all-time list ahead of Michael Schumacher and Jenson Button with what will be his 307th Grand Prix start in Sochi.

Now, only Fernando Alonso (311) and Rubens Barrichello (322) have more, but it is almost certain that Raikkonen will surpass the Brazilian as he has one more year on his contract with Alfa Romeo, which would see him reach 334 races at the end of 2020.

"Definitely not. I think I was wishing to stop much earlier," he said on Thursday on if he anticipated reaching his current mark.

"I kind of stopped it already but no, for sure not. I don’t think I had any ideas how long [I would race for]. Hopefully at least one or two years.

"Things have turned out a bit different – but I didn’t really have a plan before, I still don’t. We’ll try to go good things and as long as we enjoy it, obviously we’ll keep racing and see what happens."

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As for whether his career, which spans over two stints from 2001-2009 and 2012-2019, gives Raikkonen any satisfaction, the famously laid back 'Iceman' admits he isn't too bothered. 

"Not really. I mean, to me, as long as I feel myself that I can drive where I expect to be, and I can do things as I, in my head, I feel I should, then I’m happy to keep going, plus, as long as the racing is the bigger part than all the other nonsense," he explained.

"I don’t really think ‘Oh, I’ve done this much racing, and it's a great thing’. For me, the results are much more important than any other fact. Maybe the day you stop, and after a while when you look backwards, it means something. But right now, no."