Raikkonen's return to his old squad is not yet certain, McLaren says. (LAT photo)
McLaren says it is yet to decide the identity of Lewis Hamilton's 2010 teammate.
Today's confirmation that Fernando Alonso would make his long-anticipated move to Ferrari in 2010 has led to suggestions that McLaren will soon announce that Kimi Raikkonen will be returning to the Woking,UK-based squad after a three-year absence to partner Hamilton next season. But McLaren insisted that its second seat remains open at present.
"As is already in the public domain, Lewis Hamilton is contracted until the end of the 2012 season," said a McLaren spokesman. "As regards the identity of our other driver for 2010 and beyond, we have not yet made a decision."
Hamilton's current teammate, Heikki Kovalainen, has had a disappointing 2009 season, struggling to match the World Champion for race pace in particular. Sources have suggested that Raikkonen is close to deal to take Kovalainen's place. Raikkonen previously drove for McLaren from 2002 to '06, winning nine races and coming close to two World Championships during this period before leaving for Ferrari.