December 12th, 2021

Heartbreak at the flag

2021 FIA Formula One Abu Dhabi Grand Prix – Race – Sunday

Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN suffered heartbreak in Yas Marina as both Antonio Giovinazzi and Kimi Räikkönen were forced to retire from the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. On the last race for both drivers, technical failures caused their races to meet an early end when running just outside the points.

This disappointing evening brings our season to an end, with a total tally of 13 points to our name. As we pack up in Abu Dhabi, with the tail of a test on Tuesday and Wednesday next week, it is time to regroup and enjoy a break, before returning stronger for the 2022 season.


Frédéric Vasseur, Team Principal Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN:
“Ending any race with two retirements is always disappointing, even more so when it’s the final one of the season. We really wanted to give our drivers a better send-off and finish the season with a good result. As we head into the off-season, we’ll need to take the positives from the year past and use them to build on them for 2022. We need to acknowledge that the step forward we made in performance this year was good, but unfortunately the results didn’t back it up. We have let some big chances get by, we have made some mistakes and we didn’t really get everything we deserved. There is a lot of work to do in the winter but we are prepared for it and we can’t wait to see the results of all our efforts when we line up on the grid next year.”


Kimi Räikkönen (car number 7):
Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN C41 (Chassis 05/Ferrari)
Race result: DNF
Fastest lap: 1:29.698 (Lap 23)
Tyres: New Medium (20 laps) – New Hard (3 laps – DNF)

“It’s been nice to see so many people showing their appreciation today, even if the race didn’t go as we hoped. We had an issue after the pit-stop, a technical problem that meant we finished earlier today. That’s racing, sometimes things fail, but today’s result doesn’t influence how I feel about my career. I’m happy to move on to a normal life, I am looking forward to it. Of course, I will miss a lot of the great people I met over the years; 20 years have gone quickly, I made lots of memories, some good, some bad, and these are going to stay with me forever.”


Antonio Giovinazzi (car number 99):

Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN C41 (Chassis 02/Ferrari)
Race result: DNF
Fastest lap: 1:29.442 (Lap 33)
Tyres: New Medium (16 laps) – New Hard (15 laps – DNF)

“It’s a pity to end the season like this, the first DNF after a full season of finishing. We were having a good race, fighting a world champion like Vettel, but at least I could enjoy watching the final laps of this race. It’s been a great battle between Max and Lewis, both would have deserved the title. It’s been an emotional day overall, seeing Kimi retire and seeing all the things the team did for us today. He’s a great person, very fair and all of F1 will miss him. As for me, I hope this is just a ‘see you soon’: my full focus is now on Formula E, but I hope to be back next year. I’m happy with my journey, the way I progressed over the years, I gave everything I could.”