The Unknown Kimi Räikkönen by Kari Hotakainen: this will delight all fans of motorsport and those who have long revered the elusive Finn - book review -

The Unknown Kimi Rikknen
The Unknown Kimi Rikknen
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Kimi Räikkönen is the Finnish superstar Formula One driver with a reputation for being fast on the track and silent off it… until now.

Kimi Räikkönen is the Finnish superstar Formula One driver with a reputation for being fast on the track and silent off it… until now.

In this fascinating, authorised portrait of Räikkönen, Kari Hotakainen, a successful Finnish novelist and past winner of the Finlandia Award, reveals a side of the man that few beyond his close family and friends have ever seen.

Enigmatic and intensely private, Ferrari’s former world champion driver, whose childhood poverty helped shape the man he became, rarely opens up to outsiders, but he granted Hotakainen exclusive access to his world, his wry humour and to his way of thinking in interviews at Räikkönen’s home and during race weekends.

Including never-previously-seen photographs from his own collection, The Unknown Kimi Räikkönen takes the reader into the heart of the action at grand prix circuits around the world, behind the scenes as race strategies are planned, and opens up the private side of his life that he normally guards so carefully.

With all the raw excitement of Formula One and the insight of the best biographies, this will delight all fans of motorsport and those who have long revered the elusive Finn.

(Simon & Schuster, hardback, £20)