Kimi Raikkonen skipped out on his Formula One commitments at Spa-Francorchamps on Thursday, and his Lotus team has said that the Finnish driver is ill, but will be back at the track on Friday.
Usually on Thursdays, drivers have media commitments, team briefings, and a track walk with their engineers, although Raikkonen opts out of the latter.
Inevitably, there is speculation that Raikkonen simply doesn’t want to face a barrage of media questioning about his future.
A more likely explanation is that he is making a point to the team, which is believed to be behind on salary payments. While missing Friday or any other track running will clearly harm his title campaign, he may well believe that he can skip Thursday and in doing so ruffle a few feathers at the team.
Meanwhile, his future remains up in the air after his management told the media earlier this week that any negotiations with Red Bull had ceased.
Although he can clearly stay at Lotus, he has to be convinced that the team will have a competitive package in 2014, and that the funds will be in place to properly recompense him.
Raikkonen is still potentially of interest to other teams, and a return to Ferrari is not out of the question.
Tags: Belgian Grand Prix, Formula 1, Formula One, Kimi Raikkonen, Lotus, Spa-Francorchamps