Kimi Raikkonen insists that winning or losing a second Formula 1 championship in 2012 would not change his life. While it remains his target, he maintains is not the only motivating force behind his return to the sport.
The 32-year-old Finn, who won his first world championship title with Ferrari in 2007, says that he and the Lotus team will do everything they can to close the 49-point gap to championship leader Fernando Alonso, but that he does not feel 'desperate' to recapture the title.
"I always said that if I win one I'm happy and then if something comes after that good, but I am not desperate on it," Raikkonen said at Spa. "We do everything that we can to try and win it, but if it doesn't come, it doesn't come. It doesn't change my life in the long run. We are here to try to win races and championships but it is not like it is going to suddenly change my life completely.
"When I feel I want to stop I will stop and it's not that I try to carry on and try to win. It's not going to be the reason why I am going to stay here."
Raikkonen added that being in the championship hunt in the first year of his return to F1 has not changed his approach to race weekends, and that he brings the same attitude to his driving week in, week out.
"It doesn't change anything for me. It doesn't change if I am in the last position in the points to the first," he said. "We always race as well as we can and we will see what happens.
"It was difficult to expect anything – it was a new team and we expected to have a good car but then it was hard to say after the previous year that we would have a very easy time so I've been really happy with how things have gone but for sure we could have done a bit better also in many ways. But it could have been much worse."
Asked if winning a second title could compare to winning with Ferrari, Raikkonen replied: "I have only won with Ferrari so it is hard to say. I had a good time there, I won my championship, things could probably have ended up to go slightly more nicer in the end but that's life and that's racing.
"Now we are here and I am happy with them and hopefully we can win races and fight for the championship."