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Raikkonen ready to go rallying again this weekend 27 May 2009

Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Ferrari.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 6, Monaco Grand Prix, Race, Monte-Carlo, Monaco, Sunday, 24 May 2009 Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) talks with JJ Lehto (FIN). Arctic Rally, Rovaniemi, Finland, 22-24 January 2009. Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) FIAT Punto Abarth gets some air. Arctic Rally, Rovaniemi, Finland, 22-24 January 2009.

After an impressive debut performance in January’s arduous Arctic Lapland Rally - he finished 13th - it seems Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen has caught the rallying bug. Swapping the snow of Finland for Italian tarmac, this weekend Raikkonen will take part in the annual Rally della Marca alongside co-driver Kaj Lindstrom.

“I'll race in a rally in Italy, in the Marca Trevigiana, and I want to thank the Scuderia that they gave me the possibility to take part in such a competition,” Raikkonen told Ferrari’s official website. “I really enjoy myself and it will be my first experience on the tarmac after some tests on snow last winter.

The shakedown for the Italian event will take place on Friday, ahead of Saturday’s race. "As I'm coming from the race track it will be interesting to see what I will be able to do behind the wheel of the Fiat Grande Punto S2000 on the roads close to Treviso,” he added.

Raikkonen heads to the rally on a high, after his return to the podium at last weekend’s Monaco Grand Prix. The Finn, who last finished in the top three at the 2008 Brazilian Grand Prix, believes that the team’s efforts are starting to pay off and that a race win in 2009 is now a real possibility, if they continue to improve the F60.

“Being back on the podium is a nice reward for the whole team,” he added. “The hard work of the last few weeks has finally borne some fruit, which is really positive for all of us. We know that we're on the right way now. There are still some minor things to be done but sooner or later we will win.

"We'll show up with further improvements of the F60 in the upcoming races and we hope we can then challenge the leaders even more, in the qualifying and in the race.”