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JANUARY 19, 2001

Raikkonen is a future world champion - says Schumacher

FERRARI driver Michael Schumacher believes Sauber's new recruit Kimi Raikkonen has the pedigree to become a future world champion in Formula One.

Raikkonen, who has only competed in 23 single-seater races, was signed by Sauber in December and Schumacher believes he has the ability to get to the top of the sport.

"I saw him drive at Mugello," said Schumacher, referring to a shared testing session between Ferrari and Sauber, who are powered by Ferrari engines.

"I observed him and I evaluated his lap times and I could see that he can be a champion. He'll make mistakes, but then again all of us do.

"Let's just wait for his first three races and we will understand more about his talent."