He was a Formula 1 driver of Finnish origin. He raced for McLaren and won the 1998 and 1999 World Championship. Many thought that a new star had been born in the Formula 1 world. He was nicknamed the “Flying Finn”. He started karting at the age of 5, where his outstanding performance won him several races. His real career began with Ford Formula, with whom he competed in F3 races in England and Italy. F3 is a third-tier competition from drivers can progress to the F1 world after winning races. This was also the case for Mika Hakkiken. He won these races in succession, and he was initially with Lotus until 1992. He spent a total of 1 year there from 1991. He then became a test driver for McLaren, from where he moved on to become a permanent driver with Michael Andretti. In 1998 he scored 8 victories, while in 1999 he had 5 wins. In 2000, after 2 wins, he announced his leave of absence in 2001, from which he did not return to the track.
At McLaren, he took part in Porsche Supercup and the Monaco Grand Prix, finishing first in both races.
“When I raced against Michael, the fight never ended until the chequered flag. You couldn’t take it lightly and slow down, he fought until the last chance. Even when he didn’t have a good package until the end of the year in 1998, before he started to improve with the improvements. He was a very tough opponent and you could never underestimate him.” Mika Hikkaken
These were the thoughts in his head when he raced with Michael Schumacher in 1998.
His successes made him the first driver since Senna to win a world title with McLaren and the last until Lewis Hamilton’s success in 2008. Häkkinen does not stand out from the rest, even if he had a short two-year run of success in the sport as a whole, at the end of where Häkkinen was no longer sure he could continue racing.
“The hardest thing is to win the world championship at the last Grand Prix. I had dinner with David after the Grand Prix in Suzuka and I told him that he was coming next year because I couldn’t take it anymore. I’m totally exhausted, it’s incredible how much effort it takes to win a world championship. It’s horrible.” Mika Hakkinen.

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