Lotus play down Raikkonen exit talk

Lotus have played down speculation surrounding the future of Kimi Raikkonen at the Enstone team as rumours suggest the 2007 champion could join Red Bull for 2014.

Team owner Gerard Lopez believes the story could be a diversionary tactic by Red Bull with Raikkonen only 3 points behind Sebastian Vettel in the championship.

“Kimi is a driver we appreciate greatly,” said Lopez. “I think he also appreciates the team.

“We would like him to stay,” he admitted. “For now, I think he cannot see himself somewhere else either.”

Lopez continued saying he believes Red Bull has triggered the story as they look to end the ongoing ‘Multi-21′ saga from Malaysia.

“After the third race, to be saying things like that … I think those who have said it are maybe having other problems.

“But that’s not the case with us, it’s going very well just as we are,” said Lopez.

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