One day in May 2014 I was invited to Rudskogen, just south of Oslo, to drive a gokart race against Kimi Räikkönen. The former World Formula 1 Champion was in Norway with Ferrari’s sponsor Santander, and some journalists were invited to race against him.
In the newspapers the days before, a spokesperson from Santander said how easy it would be for Kimi to win a race against Norwegian journalists. Well, let’s see about that, I thought to myself and drove down to Rudskogen.
In the first race I was lucky and drew the best starting position of about 10 competitors. Kimi was starting last and he passed everyone but me. It seemed like the people from Santander and Ferrari didn’t like the result, and suddenly I got the message that it would be another race – and now I had to start from the last row on the grid together with Kimi.
I had a great start and was soon in the lead. Kimi was following me, but he couldn’t catch me, and I won again. Kimi was of course fine about it. This was just for fun, and a rental kart is something completely different than a proper race car. It didn’t mean much to me either, but it was fun to beat a former F1 World Champion.
But it was clear that the organizers didn’t expect this result, so they had to improvise a prize ceremony, before Kimi flew home in his private jet.
The drama started later that day, when someone told me to check out Ferrari.com. To my big surprise Ferrari had written an article about Kimi’s visit to Norway, and it was even more surprising that they wrote about the gokart race. And there it stood that Kimi “of course” won the race against all the journalists.
I was surprised that Ferrari bothered to write about the world’s least important race, and why did they write that Kimi won, when I won both races? The Ferrari article was reprinted worldwide, including in the big Italian newspaper Gazetto Della Sport.
I wrote a short tweet about the wrong facts in the article, and the reactions soon came from all over the world. Was Ferrari lying? What was this? And a couple of hours later Ferrari corrected the article, and now wrote this: “Kimi was second after agreeing to start at the back of the grid, having been involved in a lot of battles on the track.” (- See more at: http://formula1.ferrari.com/news/kimi-a-hard-championship-motivation-intact#sthash.J0GvHgH0.dpuf)
However, you could not read who the winner was, and that he also had to start from the back of the grid…
Check out a video about the day here: