Raikkonen, Giovinazzi to stay with Alfa Romeo in 2021

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Kimi Raikkonen and Antonio Giovinazzi will remain with Alfa Romeo in 2021, the team confirmed on Friday.

It will take Raikkonen, the 2007 world champion, into an 18th F1 season. The Finn, 41, holds the records for most races entered (327) and started (324) by any driver in the history of the sport and is the oldest on the starting grid. While another year for the Finn was expected, Giovinazzi's future had looked less certain.

The Alfa Romeo news opens the door for Haas to sign Ferrari junior driver Mick Schumacher, who had looked like the most likely candidate to replace Giovinazi. Schumacher, the son of seven-time world champion Michael, looks set to win the Formula 2 championship this season.

For Alfa Romeo, it means an unchanged lineup for a third straight season. The team's announcement said it "highlights the team's commitment to continuity".

Alfa boss Frederic Vasseur hopes the pair can help Alfa Romeo rise back up the grid.

"I am very pleased for the team to continue working with Kimi and Antonio for another season. Kimi is a driver who needs no introduction: his talent has been clear to everyone since 2001 and I still see the passion and motivation in him every time I see him at work. He can be trusted to deliver 100% of what the car can produce and he is a true leader for the people working around him.

"Antonio finished last year's campaign strongly and he picked up where he left off and kept improving throughout 2020. From the track to the engineering briefings, Antonio has played a crucial role for our team and he has thoroughly deserved a new contract for 2021. His work ethic, commitment to the team and contagious enthusiasm are a huge asset for Alfa Romeo."