Posted on October 18, 2012
XPB.cc

Michael Schumacher said yesterday that he would understand why Sebastian Vettel might want to move to Ferrari to compete with Fernando Alonso at some point in the next few years, as has been mooted recently.

In an interview with Gazzetta dello Sport at the launch of a new watch he has developed with Swiss luxury brand Audemars Piguet, Schumacher said that at a certain point in the career of all drivers there comes a need to challenge yourself anew.

Asked whether he sees Vettel moving to Ferrari alongside Alonso he replied, “There’s a lot of talk about it. I think that everyone, as I experienced myself at a certain point, feels the need for a fresh challenge; he too will have that, if he takes a decision in that sense.”

Schumacher said that he would definitely stop racing after the Brazilian Grand Prix and had no intention of driving any other type of racing car in competition again, “I’m stopping here for good,” he said, adding that he had no regrets over his the second career in F1 from 2010 to today, which has been useful because it taught him ‘how to lose’

“If I look in the rear view mirror of my life, I see myself happy and smiling,” he said. “I’ve had two distinct careers; one where I won everything and the second in which I learned what it means to lose. Yes I’ve learned how to lose. But this has made me more mature and also more patient, my age is part of that. Now I can look back globally on what I have done and I’m satisfied.

“I have no regrets, just joy for what I’ve achieved. And now life, from here onwards, will offer me plenty of new opportunities. I can’t wait.”

This is the closest Schumacher will come to admitting that in his first career he did things which crossed the line of acceptability because he couldn’t stand the idea of losing and makes clear that he accepts it and has come to terms with it; the three most notorious being the collisions with Damon Hill at the final round in 1994 and with Jacques Villeneuve at the final round of 1997, as well as Rascasse-gate in 2006, where he parked the car in qualifying at Monaco in order to stop rivals beating him to pole position.

These things will always be on his record; he is the only driver to have been disqualified from FIA championship records, for example, for what happened at Jerez in 1997. But his record of seven world titles and 91 wins is there for all time. Perhaps only now is he able to realise what that all means.

It stands in stark contrast to that other seven times champion, Lance Armstrong, who is seeing all his achievements and his entire sporting persona pulled down because of his systematic use of doping in cycling. Schumacher may have committed the odd professional foul along the way, but he is still the colossus of our sport.

Schumacher rules out running his own F1 team and says, rather unconvincingly, that he’s going to dedicate his competitive urge to horses and Western-style competitions with his wife Corinna.

Time will tell whether this is enough for Schumacher, who has always been very adept at using his personal brand. It’s hard to see him letting that slip away in retirement.

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Schumacher sees why Vettel would want ‘fresh challenge’ at Ferrari
272 Responses

  1.   1. Posted By: MISTER
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 9:06 am 

    Michael speaks like the true 7 time world champion that he is.
    He will be missed.

    [Reply]

    Wayne Reply:

    “Schumacher may have committed the odd professional foul along the way, but he is still the colossus of our sport.”

    Great quote, he did comit the odd professional foul but footballers do that systematically during every single game they play. Football is a sport where cheating is poitively encouraged by it’s fans. Glad to say F1 is not the same.

    While I had no perspective while he was racing against my then favourite, Hill, I can now admit that Schumacher is not a ‘cheat’, rather on occasion he broke the rules. There is a difference between being a ‘cheat’ outright and breaking the rules here and there.

    I am happy to say with confidence that Schumacher is a legendary F1 driver – he should be remembered as such.

    Schumacher’s current career has done nothing to enhance his legacy on the track, but niether can it possibly do anything to take away from it (to suggest as much is ridiculous). What his latest carrer has done is do much for how he is perceived as a person – so some good has come from it however you look at it.

    [Reply]

    Wayne Reply:

    Are drivers drug tested, James? Are there any benefits if drivers chose to ‘dope’? Or is it just not relevant in F1?

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    Yes they are tested, but there aren’t any drugs that would make a driver faster.

    Sebastian Reply:

    Lots of speed… ;D

    Actually they use caffeine to sharpen the senses, but it is obviously a quite mild performance enhancer.

    Sebee Reply:

    There is a drug that makes drivers faster. It’s called Speed. Adrian Newly cooks it up in his basement with help from Autodesk.

    iceman Reply:

    That is an interesting question. Are there any drugs that would actually help an F1 driver?
    At least one driver likes an espresso before a race, but any more powerful stimulant would surely do more harm than good.
    There was a slightly overweight motorcycle racer who received a short ban for testing positive after allegedly taking “diet pills”; but no F1 drivers seem to have weight problems – no-one even gets to F1 without supreme fitness.
    The emerging area of so-called “smart drugs” could present more possibilities. For example some drugs developed to treat children with ADHD are said to improve concentration, learning and memory when taken by healthy people.

    Ian Pringle Reply:

    Any drug that allows you to train harder and maintain a higher level of cardiovascular fitness will improve your concentration levels when driving. Performance enhancing drugs sadly work in all sports.

    thejudge13 Reply:

    I believe there are drugs that speed up dramatically the mind’s ability to process information and create a heightened state of alertness.

    James Allen Reply:

    Caffeine!

    Ando Reply:

    As a fan of both cycling and formula 1, I have been very interested in this question. Although there may not be drugs which can make a driver per se, I’m sure there are drugs which can enhance concentration?
    I’d love to see an article on what doping controls are undertaken in formula 1!

    Daniel G. Reply:

    There aren’t any drugs that make a driver faster, but certainly there are drugs that would be dangerous to use as far as safety is concerned, I suppose.

    Merlinghnd Reply:

    Whilst there may not be drugs to make you drive faster, there are illegal drugs and stimulants to improve fitness and improve stamina during a race which would improve you overall race performance.

    There are also of course recreational drugs that sportsmen take and are tested for. The Football League has a drug testing regime which includes recreational drugs. I am sure cocaine never made a footballer a better player but they are still tested.

    Neil Jenney Reply:

    A few could do with smug testing too.

    H. Manney Reply:

    James Allen wrote : “Yes they are tested, but there aren’t any drugs that would make a driver faster.”

    The qualifier “as far as I know” should be added to the above statement.

    The use of performance-enhancing drugs in sport is an arms race, and those who successfully use drugs despite bans against such drug use do so with the help of very clever medical professionals who have developed methods of concealing the use of drugs. If you don’t believe this is true, you need to read up on Lance Armstrong.

    Phil Reply:

    Didn’t an italian doctor say that half the grid were on drugs about 10 years ago, and then very quickly took it all back and said he’d been misquoted? I’m sure/hope that they’re not…

    Peter C Reply:

    Do they drink that Red Bull stuff?

    KGBVD Reply:

    @ iceman, in the first days of the championships the drivers, even the greats like Fangio and Moss, where all coked up during the races. The sense of invincibility really helped, I’m sure, when you knew there was a considerable chance that you could die in the race you were about to start.

    More recently, Thomas Enge’s first drug offense a few years back was, I believe, for coke. And recently, Allmendigner in NASCAR popped for a banned ADHD drug.

    shakaku Reply:

    I once read a funny story, not sure if true though, told by Moss. Before the mille miglia race Fangio gave him one of his “funny south american mix” pills.
    He said he drove 10 h / 1000 miles race and that he still couldn’t relax himself in the evening so he sat in his car and drove straight
    from Italy to Stuttgart to meet the mb board next day.
    If true, these pills were pretty hardcore and, no doubt, quite helpful to Fangio.

    James K Reply:

    Adderall is a drug that is used for ADHD, but in healthy individuals, it provides higher levels of concentration and mental stamina.

    NFL football players are popped routinely for Adderall usage. It must be perscribed by a psychiatrist due to the chemical makeup and addictive aspects of the drug. The drug has a basis of Salt of Anphetamine (Meth). If you consume the drug, you will fail a Urine Analysis for Amphetamine.

    NASCAR drivers have also been caught consuming the drug, so it does work and much better than any herbal caffine substitute.

    only1halen Reply:

    Were the drivers tested for EPO during the last twenty years?

    JimmiC Reply:

    I wonder if any drivers have used steroids during pre-season training to get themselves fit for the stresses put on the body through g-force? Presumably by the time of the opening race, the drugs would have filtered back out of the body and would be impossible to detect?

    Paul Reply:

    there are drugs for concentration which are used by alot of students in the top universities. The adhd ones others have mentioned. Also military and raf in wars? I don’t know if a driver would benefit?

    renato nysan Reply:

    The risk is the drug

    CJD Reply:

    most drivers who failed drug testing in the last years, get caught with marijuana or other “societydrugs” like koke

    allmedinger was not the first one

    Dino Reply:

    Drivers are drug and alcohol tested in all cathegories. During the years I spent doing those test, we only found “recreational” drugs as cocaine, marihuana and alcohol. When other forbidden sustance was found, used to be in older drivers who had cardio difficuties and had been prescripted by their doctors.

    fabio Reply:

    Didn’t you know? Red Bull gives you wings!

    R3D Reply:

    at this rate, Red Bull is quite content on being the official caffeine drink of every F1 driver on the grid :)

    JohnBt Reply:

    James did mention in an article about a driver who was a morphine addict. Just didn’t take note and forgot the name.

    Nico was once woken up at 11pm for a urine test. For sure, they are tested occasionally but it’s great to know F1 drivers are clean sportsman.

    What Armstrong did is totally unforgivable. An interesting news from BBC did mention that in the 90s cyclists were 2 to 3 minutes faster than the current crop as doping wasn’t an issue then.

    The current gold medalists blood and urine samples from the 2012 Olympics will be kept for the next 10 years and tested again. New drugs can’t be detected at the moment with the clever masking. So those who have cheated had better pray they don’t get caught 10 years down the line and be stripped like Armstrong.
    So much for the inspiration he transpired, has all gone down the drain for Lance.

    At this point my respect goes out to Schumacher! I don’t need to say more for those who know.

    James Allen Reply:

    That driver was Achille Varzi, pre war driver

    Kay Reply:

    James, don’t Red Bull count? :D :D :D :D :D

    Enzo Reply:

    It seems that Piquet Senior and Nigel Mansell had a special treatment(apparently with the same Doctor) to make their metabolism work faster so they could get faster reactions. Do you remember how they used to faint after the races?

    Randy_Torres Reply:

    There is ONE (and its banned by the FIA): the blown diffuser!

    paul Reply:

    hate to say it, and i know y’all will find it hard to believe, but caffeine ISN’T actually a direct stimulant!

    Dren Reply:

    I’m going to go out on a limb and say Kimi hasn’t been fully sober for a race or two.

    iceman Reply:

    Yes I thought exactly the same! Committing a handful of professional fouls and taking one dive in your career would make you a saint in the football world.

    [Reply]

    Dan Reply:

    I remember reading somewhere that use of beta blockers by current F1 drivers was widespread. It may have been wild speculation from some forum contributor but in any case I can see how this may give a driver an edge, however small.

    Again, whether there’s any truth in this and whether beta blockers are actually banned i do not know. I just wanted to say that there are substances that may improve a driver’s performance, even by a miniscule amount.

    GordonD Reply:

    As the performance of the cars – generating more G Forces – has increased the physical fitness of the drivers has become of far greater importance

    If a driver would instigate a crash to assist a team mate it is more than likely that another would look for ways to cope with fatigue, dehydration etc. Given F1s record of innovation to gain 10ths why would anyone think they would overlook the jockey. It’s not like they have a spotless record of strict adherence to the rule book.

    [Reply]

    JimmiC Reply:

    I agree regarding opinion of Schuey. The only two drivers I’ve ever followed were Senna and Hill, and so I wasn’t exactly a huge fan the first time around; although I still think his ‘final’ drive at Brazil in 2006 was one of the finest I’ve ever seen. But Schu MkII has seemed to me to be more approachable, candid, less of a media robot, whilst still retaining a little bit of the Dick Dastardly about him (nearly creating a new Rubens-shaped pit entrance.) Far from reveling in his misfortunes, I really wanted him to get one more win.

    As for the ‘professional foul’ analogy; I think he’s guilty of more than that! Perhaps he hasn’t been as destructive as Lance Armstrong (and even the most die-hard Hill fans can’t really deny that the ’94 title went to the best driver, notwithstanding the suspect Benetton and Adelaide), but some of his indiscretions have veered between cerebral calculation and arrogance; incidents outside of the big three. Maybe he’s somewhere in between, the talent of Luis Suarez, but prone to the short-term cheat of diving when the talent isn’t enough… (sorry James)

    [Reply]

    Randy_Torres Reply:

    Interesting that you make a Luis Suarez reference. He’s been vilified enough in England for doing what so many players do , including (or should I say especially) British ones, which is to try to win at all costs. I’m not saying it’s right in Suarez’s case or Schumacher’s or Senna’s (remember the Prost torpedo action?) but there is a fair whiff of hypocrisy here in Suarez’s case it is really magnified when you take into account the John Terry ruling. Forza Ferrari and YNWA!

    shortsighted Reply:

    At one time, it was easier to cheat by using traction control, etc. until a standard CPU was introduced. Did Michael benefitted in years past by teaming up with a manager who in more time thought of and introduced ‘Double DRS’ and ‘Double Diffusers’ I have no idea.

    Now under the Mercedes brand name, I guess no such transgression is looked upon favorably by the team owner and results are no longer so impressive.

    [Reply]

    Thompson Reply:

    I am not a Schumacher fan and have no ‘softening’ with regards his crimes. I too feel he benifitted from his special relationship with Ross Brawn ( who I use to discribe as a man of dubious character).

    94 was Hills season, to finish 1st, first you have to finish and Schumacher put it in the wall then took two swipes to take out Hill, it was a dispicable act and if Hill was his father and not the gentle man he is I doubt Schumacher would have kept that title.

    I struggle with Schumacher imo he’s a coward, the no.1 status thing reducing team mates to lap dogs he just leaves a bad taste with me.

    The 2nd career was like Karma, a suffering well deserved, the look on his face after each dissapointment was strangely enjoyable for me… like watching Katie Price/Jorden do bush tucker trials the other year in ‘I’m a celebrity’.

    The field as moved on with alot more talent in the field in good equ, he’s time as come and gone….pls don’t turn into something he was not in the same way they’ve done with Senna.


  2.   2. Posted By: LMW
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 9:07 am 

    James, now he’s retiring ‘for good’, will you be updating your Edge of Greatness book, to include his comeback?

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    Good question. No plans to. There’s not a huge amount to add, but it would bring it up to date.

    [Reply]

    Anil Reply:

    Out of interest James, do you plan on writing books on any other drivers? Schumacher’s one was a great insight into the man, not just the driver and it’d be great to hear your thoughts on other drivers or periods of F1.

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    I’d like to do one on Alonso, but I haven’t got the time. Books devour time!

    Gareth Reply:

    It would be time very well spent!

    _Nick_ Reply:

    Hi James, first post here but long time reader. As someone who rarely reads books (no time!!) I couldn’t put your Schumacher book down after someone gave it to me for Christmas a few years ago. Anyway, I’d say Alonso is by far the most intriguing/fascinating driver on the grid by far, and this is coming from a huge Webber fan.

    It would be fantastic to one day read a book written by yourself on Alonso as the book on Schumacher was excellent.

    From the outside looking in, there are a few drivers that look a bit cliched and boring (won’t name any!!). Who are the more interesting drivers on the grid these days?

    Kay Reply:

    I’ll be the first to buy if you have one for Alonso, James.

    zombie Reply:

    James, this is off-topic, but will you please consider doing an article on the bottom 3 teams and their drivers on the grid ? As drivers from HRT, Marussia and Caterham drive garbage cans on wheels, the only real comparision you can draw is in between teammates. I see that Narain and Pic have both had the measure of their teammates this season. Would be great to read about those who are probably trying just as hard as the guys in the front, but are unsung. Thanks.

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    Yes I will look at that

    CJD Reply:

    +1

    Stan Reply:

    +1 from me too.

    I’ve seen the BBC presenters interview the back-of-the-pack drivers in Korea and you could really tell they are in no mood to be there with that team in that car,felt bad for Kovalainen in particular.

    I think people with personality traits like racing drivers take it extremely bad if they are constantly underperforming in a form of competition,to the point of causing an illness,like depression or even heart problems.

    I’ve seen it in schools in my students all the time,insomnia is the main problem there.

    RampantHaddock Reply:

    If you do, I’ll buy a copy…until then, forget it!

    [Reply]

    AndyK Reply:

    Edge of Greatness is a brilliant book. Thanks for (albeit inadvertently) reminding me I own a copy.. I shall dig it out and re-read it.
    As somebody who grew up loving F1 in the early 90′s .. I remember the tail end of Senna’s career 92/93 when I became totally obsessed.. through the Hill/Schumacher days to the present..
    For my money Schumacher is the greatest of all time. Senna was rattled by him there’s no 2 ways about it. I recall a line from your book to the effect ‘Senna had realised that In Schumacher there was a driver faster than senna could ever be’ Is that an opinion you would hold today James?

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    I’m afraid your memory isn’t quite right. I would never have said that anyone was “faster than Senna could ever be” as I think Senna was the fastest driver ever, bar none.

    hero_was_senna Reply:

    I’d re-read that pronto, lol

    Thompson Reply:

    Nigel Mansel I believe in equal equ was faster than Senna and had bigger nuts too – he just never had the luck imo.

    fastest driver ever……prrrft!

    Nick Hipkin Reply:

    James,

    I think a whole new book on Schumy as a follow up would be interesting, a look on his second career and how it didnt go to plan but also showed the human side of Michael more than his days at Ferrari.

    He may not have won any more races but he won many fans over for just having a go

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    I’m time poor these days. Books devour time!

    Sebee Reply:

    Not sure there is much to write about. Maybe a second edition with a quick addendum, but what is there to say? He came back to stay fit, have fun, hang out with friends. I hope his kids got to see him race.

    JimmiC Reply:

    P.S. Came back, drove around the midfield, kept forgetting to stop at corners, retired again, horses.

    [Reply]

    BurgerF1 Reply:

    Lol. Apparently the book update wouldn’t take much time at all!

    Timmay Reply:

    That is perfect

    fabio Reply:

    As much as Schuey says he won’t race again, I think speed (going fast – not the actual drug) is something all drivers get addicted to.

    I predict he will be back racing in the DTM series some day.

    Davexxx Reply:

    A follow-up question James, does he ever actually sit/talk with you about what you write in your book; for example would he meet with you to discuss any ‘update’ stuff? Or do you not really talk to him directly?

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    I did spend time with him for both books, especially the first one, yes.

    If we did an update I’d look to spend some time, but there are no plans to do an update

    Harrison Vrbanjac Reply:

    Hello James,

    You wrote about Bruno Senna’s career before Formula One entry, which was very interesting considering you level of knowledge and facts.

    Have you any thoughts on writing ”Career review” on drivers that never ”made it”. I’m thinking on drivers like Couldhard, Alesi, Trulli, Fisichella, etc. Couldhard being slower than most of his teammates in Formula One yet he was around for 15 seasons, Alesi choosing Ferrari instead for superior Williams, Trulli got kick out from Renault despite matching/beating Alonso in 2004 to get beaten real bad by Kovalainen, Fisichella being suddenly very slow when teamed with Alonso, etc. It would be very interesting to read you view why these drivers career turn out as it was.

    [Reply]


  3.   3. Posted By: Stuart Harrison
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 9:15 am 

    I think this is an interesting opinion from Schumacher – Vettel & Red Bull are probably the only combo in the field capable of challenging Schumacher’s 7 WDC record, so read in a certain way, suggesting that Vettel should seek a “fresh challenge” is perhaps Schumacher trying to protect his legacy?

    Hamilton also fired a shot across Vettel’s bow recently with his comments on why he’s moving to Mercedes. Paraphrasing: “staying at a winning team is easy; moving to a struggling team and helping them win is far more of a challenge”.

    It would be better for the sport as a whole if Vettel did move on – it’s not healthy to have the same driver from the same team win year after year (I switched off during the Schumacher era and will do so again should Vettel continue to dominate).

    I also find Newey’s comments from a year or two very interesting (paraphrasing again): “Staying with a large established team and winning year after year isn’t challenging, I enjoy the challenge of taking on the big boys from a smaller team”. Arguably Red Bull is now a “big boy” – perhaps Newey might move on soon too?

    [Reply]

    Anil Reply:

    I remember Michael saying that he chose Ferrari as it was a fresh challenge and that it was ‘how he won’ that meant more to him than ‘how many’.

    If Vettel went to Ferrari and won 1 title against Alonso he would go down as an even great driver than if he stayed at RB and won a couple. It’d be crazy if Newey joined him there though..similar to when Schumacher took Brawn and co with him from Benneton to Ferrari.

    [Reply]

    Stephen Hughes Reply:

    I think Adrian has already been offered megabucks by Ferrari and turned it down. He’s in his element where he is and I can fully understand where is is coming from. A small team with all the resourced he needs but where what he says goes. No need to go up the rungs of the management chain to get anywhere, he is the technical boss and he is running the show.

    It’s a position a lot of engineers would love to be in and now he’s got it there really is no reason to want to move anywhere else.

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    He’s turned it down twice.. that I know of!

    markdartj Reply:

    I think the reason for turning down the Ferrari gig was that he didn’t want to move to Italy. Didn’t Ferrari have a designer before who stayed in UK, and that it didn’t work out too well?

    Adrian Newey Jnr Reply:

    The benefit to staying in the RB camp is the variety of different sports they’re involved with and the technical challenge of each. A good example is to the “no limits” prototype a few years back. Whilst F1 is interesting, RB have a lot of fingers in cutting edge pies.

    The Ditch Reply:

    Re. markdartj comment above.

    This stirred the old memory cells. IIRC the designer was John Barnard and in the late 80′s he set up Ferrari Guildford Technical Office (Ferrari GTO!) to work on the design of Ferrari F1 cars. I also think he designed the first ‘flappy paddle’ F1 transmission which was used on the Ferrari F1 cars.

    Wayne Reply:

    Nice point about Newey. Problem is, like most people, Newey is a part time hypocrite. He’s happy to call others out for copying RBR but is perfectly happy to do the same to others at any given opportunity.

    [Reply]

    MISTER Reply:

    :) ) I just remembered seeing Adrian near one of the Ferrari cars on the grid at one of the last 2 GPs. He had his pad with him.
    Was he just checking what Ferrari copied from him or was he looking at what he can copy from Ferrari?

    [Reply]

    Sebee Reply:

    This type of nitty-gritty is just fair game. That is until Newey finishes development on his two side pet projects:

    Light bending paint – to prevent others from seeing what the cars looks like and photographing the cars.

    Cloaking device – to make the car disappear from view whenever it is not at speed on a track. FIA is working out rules now to make sure people don’t trip over it in parc ferme. Charlie is worried RBR will use it in a GP to false start without others noticing.

    RBR alredy paid the boys at CERN for rights to black holes as well. But Newey hasn’t come up with a right application yet.

    Johnny Benerba Reply:

    Probably both! He’s very sharp. Love him or hate him, you need to be on top of what your competitors are doing.

    Adrian Newey Jnr Reply:

    The teams all analyse photos from each race to monitor developments. Not all of them can be easily copies (F-duct for example), nor might they fit in with a design concept that a team is working towards.

    [Reply]

    conor Reply:

    Though it wouldn’t happen I’d like to see Newey go to Sauber

    [Reply]

    Matthew Reply:

    That would be fantastic.

    [Reply]

    MiG2009 Reply:

    Spot on

    [Reply]

    Quercus Reply:

    An astute and well-written comment, Stuart.

    It looks like Schumacher’s urge to protect his record is as strong as his urge to make it.

    [Reply]

    Sebee Reply:

    I think the trio of RBR, Newey and Vettel can see that they probably have a shot to go for 8 WDCs.

    Anyone with a brain knows that winning WDCs is better than looking for challenges. I’m sure Vettel knows this.

    As for Schumi, he has a point. But honestly and obviously it’s just his point of view. He can talk from that throne because he did it. Talking to Schumi about WDCs right now is like anyone on this planet talking to Felix about skydiving.

    Let me remind you that Alonso was supposed to break Schumi’s 7 according to some. I think we can agree that won’t be happening. Still long way to go for anyone on this grid to even match Schumi’s lucky 7.

    [Reply]

    CJD Reply:

    if … then vettle goes fore the 5 in a row with RB .. then we maybe have 2015 ..
    if he gets the 5 with RB then he will stay

    if he misses out on one WCD on this way, he’ll move on to the praising horse to try to got fore the 7 WDC (then without 5 in a row..)

    this is my bet

    greetings

    AuraF1 Reply:

    Eventually Adrian newey will retire – or at least turn his engineering mind to ‘fun’ projects not the stringent world of F1. I’d actually see Adrian moving on long before vettel does (who conceivably has another 15 or more seasons if he continues the trend for older drivers).

    Vettel will have to continue in a car without Adrian and his team, he may just make it in a Ferrari.

    I still think vettel to Ferrari in 2016 is more sensible. He’ll still barely be 30 then – arguably at his peak and Alonso will have his contract coming to an end.

    [Reply]

    Andrew M Reply:

    It’s all speculation obviously, but I think one of the main reasons Vettel would want to move to Ferrari is to prove that he can match and beat Alonso in the same car.

    [Reply]

    MISTER Reply:

    But will he?
    Looking at the last 3 years, Alonso had a pretty bad car compared with Vettel’s and he did very very well in the points.
    This year, with a clearly superior car, Vettel just now edges Alonso in the points. One can wonder what would Alonso have done in this year’s RBR8 if he did so well in the Ferrari?

    I know Alonso had no problems from Massa, but neither did Vettel from Webber. I don’t recall any instance when Webber caused Vettel to slip backwards or take points which Vettel otherwise would’ve had. Same for Alonso, this season he wasn’t given any points by Massa. Exception is the last race when Massa was pretty competitive and could’ve overtake him, but I think Alonso could’ve fend off Massa if they were free to race.

    Mingojo Reply:

    It will depend on the car. I think Vettel is really good, but the car has to be good, when the car is not good Fernando is always there. We can’t say the same about Seb.

    Monza01 Reply:

    Spot on comment, Mingojo.

    The only drivers that seem to be capable of ringing as much or even a little more out of a poorly handling car than Alonso are Hamilton and Michael Schumacher when he was at Benetton and Ferrari.

    It seems to be a real problem for Massa, Vettel and particularly Button.

    Luke Reply:

    Agreed Mingojo – the Redbull is built around Vettel’s driving style, and Webber just has to learn to live with Vettel’s car. When the car was less tailored around Vettel in 2010, you notice that Webber had his measure until he secretly fractured his shoulder leading in to the last 4 rounds of the season where he no doubt drove in agony and Vettel won the championship. 2011, the car was built around Vettel, didn’t suit Webber and they used the ‘unable to cope with tyres excuse’, then early this year he had Vettel’s measure too until the car was updated to Vettel’s liking, and Webber’s form then dropped off until the last race.

    I think you’ll find that in a mirror match between Alonso and Vettel, Alonso will in reality eat him alive.

    [Reply]

    Davexxx Reply:

    Regarding Adrian Newey, he’s said he’s not interested in moving somewhere overseas (ie Ferrari) so if he did move it would be to another ‘local’ UK based team. But he might just enjoy staying trying to keep Red Bull the best.

    [Reply]

    Thompson Reply:

    Mercedes…..

    [Reply]

    Martin Reply:

    Probably too many cooks with Brawn’s current structure for Newey’s liking. Horner was able to structure everything to how Newey wanted it with Red Bull money. 2009 then brought the rule change that brought Ferrari and McLaren back to the field. The 2014 cars are already in the planning phase, so Newey wouldn’t have the same blank canvas if he were to move.

    You can’t just transplant Newey and expect to get the same results. Most of the ideas on the current cars wouldn’t be his – he would sanction development of ideas in certain areas as they come up and determine architectures.

    Cheers,

    Martin


  4.   4. Posted By: Racyboy
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 9:19 am 

    Arguably the 3 biggest names in sport at the turn of the century were Michael Schumacher, Lance Armstrong and Tiger Woods.
    Michael can be proud of a magnificent career besides the 3 indisretions, 2 of which possibly cost him the championship.
    For me Valentino’s the man, can’t wait to see him win again.

    [Reply]

    zombie Reply:

    Valentino would have served a life ban had he been in F1 ! He elbowed Sete Gibernau at over 250 kmph, and tried the same on Biaggi. It is just that, such antics are considered as part of the game in Motogp, but F1 has a different perspective.

    [Reply]

    Gil Dogon Reply:

    Well speaking of utter domination, in actually any kind of sport, there is nobody to surpass Loeb, who is retiring now after 9 straight WRC championships. And I guess in WRC you have much less of a chance of cheating/fouling. So I guess his legacy would not be tarnished ….

    [Reply]

    Dino Reply:

    Well WRC nowadays is like if in F1 there where four F1 and the rest of the grid were GP2 and F3 cars. And of this four F1, two were RBR and two Williams…

    This is the least competitive era of rallying, even if I consider Loeb being a great rally driver, the value of those 9 titles is not as absolutely great.

    In the times of the Lancia/Peugeot/Audi/Ford WRC, against the Vatanens, Alens, Toivonens et all, I could not see him winning 9 times.

    Jenks Reply:

    What Loeb has achieved is astounding.

    nino Reply:

    Giacomo Agostini.
    15 world titles.

    hero_was_senna Reply:

    Zombie, Valentino WAS elbowed by Biaggi on to the grass at Suzuka in 2001

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sMoZvegiDGc

    Regarding Gibernau, You’d have to find the clip as I don’t remember that happening.

    Either way, MotoGP riders are made of tougher stuff than the boys who drive these cars.

    Of the current grid, the only drivers I could see with the mettle to be on bikes would be Alonso, Webber and Maldonado, they all seem capable of crazy!!!

    [Reply]

    JohnBt Reply:

    [Either way, MotoGP riders are made of tougher stuff than the boys who drive these cars.]

    Agree, I feel the MotorGP riders are men with balls made of steel. The amount of broken bones and operations those riders go through is something worth taking note of, for their guts and bravery. Further more they get paid less. But they are truly awesome. Rossi is still on fire but his current Ducati isn’t and he’ll be back with Lorezo next year, wonderful!

    F1 drivers are very lucky sportsman if I may say. A couple of aches here and there is the general occurrence. Remember Webber’s flying machine at Valencia? and he walked away safely.

    Simmo Reply:

    Valentino did have the choice of F1. If he had been at Ferrari with Michael… What a team it would have been ;)

    [Reply]

    Kay Reply:

    Valentino never did have the choice of F1. It’d only be possible if teams are allowed to field 3 cars, which LdM have been pushing very hard for in the past 5-6 years. LdM would never risk his two main cars to some new guy in the game.

    [Reply]

    Simmo Reply:

    yes he did

    Wu Reply:

    Rossi was considered as Schumi’s replacement, and shown speed in the few tests he did with Ferrari, but cited ‘lack of self-expression’ in a F1 car compared to motorbikes in his decision to commit to MotoGp instead.

    Kay Reply:

    He did?
    http://www.pitpass.com/39823-di-montezemolo-on-the-F10-new-rules-third-car-and-Valentino-rossi

    Your insistence seems like a blind support to own idea to me.

    [Reply]

    Simmo Reply:

    “Your insistence seems like a blind support to own idea to me”. Seriously? I’m just imagining what it could have been like. I’m not stating anything factual… It’s just a bit of imagination.


  5.   5. Posted By: 5reasonreviews.com/
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 9:19 am 

    Nice article James – very interesting interpretation of Schumacher’s comments

    Personally, I think the criticism Schumacher faced when he almost put Barrichello into the wall at the 2010 Hungarian GP was a big wake up call for him

    Re Alonso and Vettel – I would have thought it mattered less what Vettel wanted to do and more what Alonso was happy with?

    [Reply]


  6.   6. Posted By: andyb
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 9:22 am 

    I had him pencilled in to drive a Merc in the Bathurst 1000 next year

    [Reply]

    Kevin Reply:

    Don’t tease me……..

    [Reply]

    Grayzee (Australia) Reply:

    oooooohhhhh………..yeah!….do it, do it, do it!!! :P

    [Reply]


  7.   7. Posted By: DK
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 9:33 am 

    “I’ve had two distinct careers; one where I won everything and the second in which I learned what it means to lose.”

    Quote of the day. Vettel, Alonso and Lewis can learn some wisdom here.

    [Reply]

    Daniel Reply:

    Well, I think Alonso has had a fair share of “non wining lessons” lately…

    [Reply]

    Wayne Reply:

    Lewis has already learn’t that lesson I reckon over the past four years. If he hasn’t he will next year.

    [Reply]

    Davexxx Reply:

    Good One!!! ;-)

    [Reply]

    nino Reply:

    I will get plenty of those lessons at Merc.

    [Reply]

    CoB Reply:

    Alonso learnt how to loose in a Minardi, for a full year, coming 20th or something in the championship, waaaay back in 2001. He’s one of the wisest drivers out there. Vettel learnt how to loose, and then win in style in the rain, at Toro Rosso. Lewis learnt how to loose gracefully just this last year, and has grown from it.

    [Reply]

    Daniel G. Reply:

    Sorry, but Alonso knew anything but how to lose when he paired Hamilton in 2007.

    [Reply]

    Sebee Reply:

    Don’t be sorry. You’re spot on.

    Ahmed Reply:

    +1

    Matthew Reply:

    Alonso started out losing and has been winning pretty much ever since. Even in years he didn’t win the championship he could still be counted on for a couple victories, perhaps the second spell at Renault being the only exception. And I’m not so sure he learnt how to lose even then.

    [Reply]


  8.   8. Posted By: Jamoo
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 9:47 am 

    “This is the closest Schumacher will come to admitting that in his first career he did things which crossed the line of acceptability because he couldn’t stand the idea of losing and makes clear that he accepts it and has come to terms with it;”

    Assumption or Perception???

    [Reply]

    Nick Reply:

    Yes, the same from me.

    Btw: about the third comment -
    “as well as Rascasse-gate in 2006, where he parked the car in qualifying at Monaco in order to stop rivals beating him to pole position.”

    I am not so confident that Mikhael is going to take this as his own fault. He thinks that he is innocent about this particular case and I do believe him. He doesn’t care of what people say about him and that’s why he would easily admit that if that was the case, especially now. He already made some hints that he could do differently for that two first cases but not for the last one.

    [Reply]

    nino Reply:

    Again… with Hill, he just put his car back on track where he was allowed to, knowing that he had very strong chances of getting hit by Hill.
    Unfair maybe, but still within the rules.
    It was like a chess mate move.
    Pure genius!

    With Villeneuve, it was just a stupid and clumsy move.

    [Reply]

    Dino Reply:

    Regarding the one with Hill, it was no genius at all. Really dirty move and unsportive. Clark, Gilles or D. Hill would have never done something like that.

    Even as much as I admire him (I even was allowed once to see a GP inside the Ferrari garage) those incidents are unforbidden flaws for a amazing champion like him.

    paul Reply:

    hang on a minute, with the Hill incident, Hill was on his left,coming up the outside(when schumi checked), then a nanosecond later he was changed his mind to come up the inside of Schumi as he was already turning in for the corener. I would say Hill made a BAD choice there and desrved to be hit-he wouldn’t have been hit if he waited 1 second then passed him AFTER the corner, since Schumi only had 3 wheels on his wagon. Or if he stayed on the outside and took him there instead.
    You cannot blame michael for taking the apex, and some numptie deciding thats a good place for him to be as well

    Elie Reply:

    Michael Schumacher is the most calculating driver the world has ever seen . He drove straight into Damon Hill no two ways about it- I will never forget that incident as long as long as I live- I could not believe that someone would be that low!. If you think that was unintentional – you are a complete idiot ! Same for the other two incidents.
    The one that people forget is 2010- pushing Barrichello into the wall at Monaco- that was unbelievably dangerous.
    When I take his one into account I truly don’t believe the “Leopard has changed his spots”. Anyone that goes to that extent to win will never keep my respect (and I had bucket loads when he was at Benetton and his early days at Ferrari- unrivalled car control)..
    Colossus of the sport or not he will be forgotten in my books for his nature alone and I will never praise anyone with that attitude in any sport – & I follow many..Lance Armstrong is at another level again but at the end of day- if you bow to cheating more than once it brings into question every success you ever had..& Ferraris fominance when Michael was there remains in question forever.!

    Adrian Newey Jnr Reply:

    People don’t put Schumacher’s actions into the right context.

    Everyone will have seen “Senna” and probably thought that Ayrton was justified it hitting Prost. Schumacher grew up watching in that era. It set the line in the sand for what was acceptable. Therefore in his mind he was acting in a way that was allowed.

    However, Michael’s failing was that he didn’t realise that times had changed and that those actions were now considered unacceptable.

    [Reply]

    Nick F1 Reply:

    Yes, the same from me.

    Btw: about the third comment -
    “as well as Rascasse-gate in 2006, where he parked the car in qualifying at Monaco in order to stop rivals beating him to pole position.”

    I am not so confident that Mikhael is going to take this as his own fault. He thinks that he is innocent about this particular case and I do believe him. He doesn’t care of what people say about him and that’s why he would easily admit that if that was the case, especially now. He already made some hints that he could do differently for that two first cases but not for the last one.

    [Reply]

    Davexxx Reply:

    If that’s true then he hasn’t learned, or become as wise as is being implied in this piece! The Monaco thing was blatant, shameful and ‘cowardly’ in my opinion.
    In Post 1 Wayne suggests Schumi breaks the rules but doesn’t cheat, but he did in the Monaco thing.

    [Reply]

    nino Reply:

    Senna and Prost would have done much worse…
    Would have done? Not! They did.

    [Reply]


  9.   9. Posted By: Richardd
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 9:53 am 

    I believe his second stint in F1 has been humbling for him and that experience makes you a better person

    [Reply]

    Kimi4WDC Reply:

    Age and family does that to you :)

    [Reply]


  10.   10. Posted By: JCA
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 9:54 am 

    James, how big is Schumi in America? I can see him as a “comishener” of the U.S. DTM/SuperGT series.

    [Reply]

    zombie Reply:

    Schumi is near synonym with F1 on States side. He is the biggest name over this side of the pond since Andretti.

    [Reply]

    Rich C Reply:

    Outside of F1 circles here I’m sure nobody knows him.

    And what, pray tell, is “the US DTM/SuperGT series”??

    [Reply]

    JCA Reply:

    Autosport report of Super GT adopting DTM regs with joint races, DTM trying to launch a U.S series. Plus some wild a.. guessing ;-)

    [Reply]

    JCA Reply:

    OK, a lot of guessing, but makes sense for Merc, Audi, BMW, Toyota/Lexus, Honda/Acura, Nissan/Infiniti.
    Just typing that makes me sort of exited!
    Ford, Caddi and Chrysler to join in?

    [Reply]

    Sebee Reply:

    He would get my vote for President.

    [Reply]

    JCA Reply:

    Just no “binders of women” please.

    [Reply]

    Sebee Reply:

    His mandate would be to make everything faster!

    How could you not vote for that?

    JCA Reply:

    P.s. ” please continue, governor” might be my favourite quote of the year.


  11.   11. Posted By: Dom
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 10:04 am 

    I don’t respect any of the alleged dodgy championships (The possible illegal cars, possible cheating via traction control or lead-lined helmets giving a weight advantage, the FIA Bias towards Ferrari/the bargeboard re measuring, the contracted no.2 drivers/never taking on a rival without an advantage/bigger team budgets (by an epic factor during the Ferrari years) and more practice time by a large factor both compared to team-mates and other team’s drivers…

    However, I do respect how Schumacher stuck with his comeback and is now outqualifying Nico on a regular basis. Personally, I’d have liked to have seen Lewis and Schumacher next year and think it’s a real shame we didn’t see Schumacher and Haikkonen both at their prime at Mclaren.

    [Reply]

    newton Reply:

    Lead-lined helmet? How can that possibly give an advantage?

    [Reply]

    iceman Reply:

    Do you have a reference for the “lead-lined helmet” allegation? Google finds only you saying it on here, and someone called “dom180″ saying the same thing on pistonheads. I did find a Maurice Hamilton article saying Nascar driver David Pearson had used that trick.

    [Reply]

    Dom Reply:

    There was a storm about driver weights and how Schumacher seemed to lose a lot of weight during a GP – there’s a ref here to weight loss during a GP:

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Michael-Schumacher-Defending-Christopher-Hilton/dp/1852605421

    I thought a journalist mentioned overweight or lead-lined helmets somewhere and there was an issue with weigh-ins but I may have confused the reference you mention. – IIRC didn’t the driver weighting rules change after the ’95 season?

    [Reply]

    Dom Reply:

    FAO James, feel free to edit my original comment regarding lead lined helmet – I thought it was a commonly known rumour – don’t want to get/get the blog into trouble!! Dom.

    Eoined Reply:

    There were several drivers who mysteriously changed weight during the course of that weekend. The rules were changed immediately after that race.

    madmax Reply:

    Benneton wasn’t the only team viewed with suspicion in 1994 about driving aids. The barge boards were in 1999 when Schumacher was lying up most of the year with a broken leg and hence wasn’t fighting for the championship.

    Does anybody seriously think any of his teammates were capable of getting remotely close to him in his prime never-mind beating him?

    For all his complaints Barrichello has yet to say he was a contracted no2 driver and made plenty of noise about being equal when he went to the team.

    [Reply]

    zombie Reply:

    Mclaren also had the dormant but unremoved code for traction control in 1994. The same barge boards were used in 2 prior races until FIA deemed them illegal , and later retracted because they were within 5mm error margin. Ferrari demonstrated that this was well within the regulations when they measured it again at the FIA court of appeals.

    Mclaren’s 3rd pedal in 1998 to use it as a traction control did not ban them from any races, neither have flexi wings, illegal endplates, or non-confirming Michelin tires, so why ban Ferrari ?

    Like others, i’ve never heard of lead-lined helmets. All i know is Schuberth made Schumacher’s helmets, and they supply to countless other guys on the grid.

    FIA supporting Ferrari through regulations theory was shot down when throughout the early 2000s and well in 2006, FIA kept changing rules to hamper Ferrari’s dominance. The primary changes being no tyre change rules in 2005. Not to mention 1 lap shoot-outs knowing all to well that Ferraris were notorious for not performing well over a single lap.

    More practice team ? Ferrari is a 6 decades old team that has a track at its factory. The testing rules were same for everyone. I’m sure Mclaren and BMW-Williams did just as many test laps as required by their engineers, and so did Ferrari. How is Ferrari at fault here ?

    As for Barichello, we all know how many titles he won at Honda,Brawn and Williams or while he was with Stewart-Ford or Jordan ? Or for that matter when Ferrari did not have the outright best car in 2000 or 2003 or 2005 ?

    [Reply]

    madmax Reply:

    Great post Zombie, I nominate this as the standard reply to the usual stupid accusations that are normally inspired by a couple of British journalists that clearly have a vendetta against Schumacher and want to pin anything on him they possibly can.

    hero_was_senna Reply:

    The ever wonderful wikipedia,

    “One of the rule revisions stated that the minimum weight limit of 595 kilograms (1,310 lb) applied to both car and driver together. Prior to the first session of the season, all of the drivers were weighed to establish a reference weight to be used on occasions when the two were weighed separately, or if the driver was unavailable to be weighed. As such, a small competitive advantage could be established if the driver attempted to register a weight as heavy as possible, so their actual weight when driving the car would be lower.[4] Williams Technical Director Patrick Head estimated that a weight penalty of 7 kilograms (15 lb) could cost 14 seconds over the course of 70 laps of the circuit.[25] In the drivers’ weigh-in, Schumacher weighed in at 77 kilograms (170 lb), compared to 69 kilograms (150 lb) at the beginning of the 1994 season.[2] Sauber driver Karl Wendlinger gained the most weight compared to 1994, gaining 22 pounds (10.0 kg). Wendlinger’s team-mate Frentzen and Tyrrell driver Ukyo Katayama added the least amount of weight, gaining 3 pounds (1.4 kg).[26] When Schumacher was weighed after the race, his weight had decreased to 71.5 kilograms (158 lb), although this weight, when combined with that of his car, still left it above the limit, at 599 kilograms (1,320 lb).[4] Schumacher explained the weight gain as a consequence of a fitness regime over the winter that had converted excess fat to muscle, and also admitted to eating and drinking heavily, in addition to refraining from using the toilet, prior to the weigh-in.[4][25]”

    Schuberth entered F1 in 2000, and supplied Schumacher from 2001 onwards.

    madmax Reply:

    Boxer Julio Ceaser Chavez can weigh in at 160Ib the day before a fight yet on fight night he has been weighed at 183IB.

    That’s the opposite way around but 20IBs is not a big amount for a professional athlete to fluctuate and if Schumacher done it you can be sure others were as ponted out and none of them needed any special helmet.

    zombie Reply:

    @ Senna_was_hero : Yes, i did refer to Wiki before making my original post, and nowhere does it say anything about a “lead lined” helmet, and neither does your snippet from wiki.

    The thing about drivers losing weight over the course of a race due to severe perspiration and muscle endurance is norm, and the rest of the drivers must have IQs below their shoe sizes if they did not realize they’d lose weight after a race ! They key sentence is “Schumacher was 599 kilos when weighed along with his car after the race” – which makes the car and driver a comfortable 4 kilos over the limit. It is a age old norm in motorsports to design cars underweight, and add ballast to take them to minimum weight, not a kilo more and not a kilo less.

    Yeah, please ask Dom to write to Aral or Schuberth and get us an explanation when and why they supplied these so called lead lined helmets that made Schumacher bionic !

    6 Wheeled Tyrrell Reply:

    The key word is Allegedly. You cannot convict someone of something you cannot prove.

    As for the budget and practice times, all the teams have one set of rules to play by, if the others didn’t or couldn’t run as many test/development sessions, then that is on them. Ferrari ran the program that they felt was more conducive to winning and it was at the time perfectly legal.

    There are no points awarded for being the plucky team who did the most with the least, first one to cross the checkered flag wins, full stop, and if you think Mclaren, Williams and Red Bull are any less ruthless, I have this bridge in London I would like to sell you.

    [Reply]

    Sebee Reply:

    In cycling you take steroids.
    In F1 you find loopholes.

    Except, loopholes are legal.

    [Reply]

    Kay Reply:

    Well the RBR flexi-wing wasn’t exactly a loophole, just a trick they used in the construction of the wing which the FIA cannot prove it to be illegal O__O

    [Reply]

    Sebee Reply:

    FIA’s inability to “prove it” was a loophole.

    We could discuss if it was in the spirit. But with such high stakes, did the FIA not expect the teams to get clever? RBR is not the only one to try to find the edge. I certainly don’t like it when a team I’m not cheering for does it. But this type of sneaky stuff is what makes F1 interesting. Just when you think they have developed as much as they can develop, they find some magic pixy dust to come up with yet another way to find 0.1s.

    Stephen Kellett Reply:

    How could a lead lined helmet be an advantage? If anything it would be a disadvantage.

    Why a disadvantage? More weight for your neck to hold up, especially through high speed corners.

    Don’t believe me? Go and put on your favourite wooly hat. Now stuff a bag of sugar into it while wearing it. That’s only 1Kg extra (2.2Lbs). Your head weighs about 14lbs (yes really), so you’ve just increased the (stationary) load on your head by about 14% (2/14 => 1/7 -> 14%).

    Now the kinetic energy(in joules) on your head when moving is

    0.5 x M x V x V

    so you can see as veloctiy increases we have a squared impact on the final value. So adding mass just makes things much worse. That extra energy has to be supported by your neck during cornering, braking and acceleration and even when in a straight line with no velocity change you’ve just got the added weight to deal with.

    So all you are doing with a lead lined helmet is making your neck get tired faster. That’s the last thing a racing driver needs.

    I’d love to have an explanation that outweighs these sizeable disadvantages for a lead-lined helment (nevermind the health ones).

    [Reply]


  12.   12. Posted By: madmax
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 10:13 am 

    It really is a shame the comeback was made with not counting a Brawn double diffuser, a team that ONLY WON ONCE IN 12 YEARS despite having recent world champion Villenueve, future world champion Button and multiply GP winner Barrichello as their drivers.

    Like it’s predecessor BAR, Merc promised the world but massively underperformed. People tend to forget Barrichello was beating Button at one stage in this disaster team.

    Now Button is at a good team look how highly rated he is. It’s a shame Schumacher didn’t also get a chance to drive for a top team in his comeback just to give a fair view how arguably the greatest off all time in his forties stacks up against the best of today.

    After a struggle to get rid of the rust Schumacher is now 9-7 up in qualifying against Rosberg and 6-1 in races both finished. How much that means we will see next year when Rosberg is up against Hamilton.

    Unfortunatly this is the closest we will see 43 year old Schumacher and Vettel in the same car http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GQyH2xi46s8

    [Reply]

    Jon T Reply:

    JB, Honda, Hungaroring 2006. Rosberg, Merc, China 2012. It’s still a poor record admittedly but they’ve most definitely not had “only one” win, sorry.

    [Reply]

    madmax Reply:

    Jon T, was just counting the 12 years from 1999 to 2011. Not this year but if want to then that is 2 wins in 13 years!

    [Reply]

    MISTER Reply:

    Vettel’s fans will hate you for posting the link for that race where Schumi beats Vettel. :) )

    [Reply]

    madmax Reply:

    haha, to be fair Vettel won the year before, but the year before that Schumacher won so they are 2-1 to Schumacher!

    [Reply]


  13.   13. Posted By: forzaminardi
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 10:28 am 

    I am not by any means a fan of Schumacher, but my respect for him as a human being has risen after his ‘second’ F1 career. First of all, it took balls to come back at all, and although the car probably wasn’t as good as 2009′s Honda/Brawn might have made him hope, he stuck it out and there was never a whisper of him being frustrated or upset by their lack of competitiveness. Secondly, once he accepted that it would take a good degree of luck to win again, and a realisation that he was very obviously not among the very best drivers out there, he seemed to begin enjoying being a F1 driver for itself. Before, he seemed to be in F1 only for the pleasure of winning, but never really seemed to actually enjoy it. Latterly he seemed to enjoy the simple fact of driving and racing; in short he seemed to be someone at ease with himself and his career. This immediately made him much more likeable compared to the cold, distant and arrogant persona he appeared to have before.

    As someone above says, I think the unanimous criticism he faced after Hungary 2010 smacked him in the face. While even I as a Rubens die-hard could never claim the Brazilian was a genuine match for Schumacher at his peak, I think the contrast between MK1 Schumacher (‘in it to win it’) and Rubens (‘in it for the love of it’) and the repective sympathy and affection for both perhaps made him rethink his approach.

    I couldn’t forgive the things he did in his career (I remember being in tears watching Williams desperately try to fix Hill’s suspension in Adelaide), for I think his personality and integrity ought to have been fully formed by then. But I can appreciate a hugely talented person gaining perspective on their achievements and abilities as they grow older. I’m glad he’s retiring from F1 as apparently a happier person, but I’m glad also he’s retiring from F1 to let Rubens’ record of starts last for a bit longer!

    [Reply]

    Davexxx Reply:

    Great post! Sums my own feelings up well too.

    [Reply]


  14.   14. Posted By: Amritraj
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 10:29 am 

    Hi James,

    As an aside, is it correct that Massa raced a different exhaust system in Korea, which explains his superior pace to Alonso’s?

    I would be very surprised if this were the case, unless Ferrari were worried about reliability of the system itself.

    Regards,

    Amritraj

    [Reply]

    Nick F1 Reply:

    If that was the case then Massa was driver number #1, in Ferrari, for the first and last time :)

    So, do not say me then about if Massa had the same car all the time in previous races (since middle 2010 & German race – 2012) … we never know until someone reveal that.

    [Reply]

    Mocho_Pikuain Reply:

    You are right, Ferrari tested at Korea some of the updates they will bring in India. Some were a bit radical and were tried only on Massa’s car, but looks like they worked well and that’s probably the reason for his extra speed, unlike some Fernando-haters would like.

    [Reply]

    Kimi4WDC Reply:

    Whats there to hate, Massa is just faster than Alonso at certain tracks. Alonso is pretty bad at Suzuka, Massa is pretty amazing there. Thats just how it is.

    [Reply]

    Amritraj Reply:

    How is Alonso pretty bad at Suzuka?! And how is Massa amazing there?!

    madmax Reply:

    That came from a Spanish publication that would look for any reason possible why their beloved Alonso was made look slow by his teammate.

    Any word if it’s true James?

    [Reply]


  15.   15. Posted By: madmax
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 10:30 am 

    Hope Vettel does go to Ferrari. That would make things very interesting.

    [Reply]


  16.   16. Posted By: Amritraj
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 10:32 am 

    Can’t see my comment, pending moderation.

    [Reply]


  17.   17. Posted By: Dave
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 10:50 am 

    I must admit, I loathed Schumacher in his glory days at Ferrari – the dirty tactics and the smug arrogance – but I’ve really warmed to him as a person in his stint with Merc. He seems more human, more humble – I’ve even found myself cheering for him at points in the season which is something I thought I’d never do!

    [Reply]

    MISTER Reply:

    I hope Michael will see your message and others like it. This will show even more that his comeback has not passed as a failure to some of us.

    [Reply]

    Stewart Reply:

    +1

    [Reply]


  18.   18. Posted By: Pete
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 11:51 am 

    the Schumi quotes above do, under no circumstances, suggest that he is admitting he ever crossed the line

    I don’t know how one could even spin it like that

    Schumi being a “cheat” or “guilty” of transgressions is pretty much a very English obsession

    Michael himself has said in the past that his toughness was typical of the era in which he grew up, where everybody was looking up towards the likes of Senna and Prost

    attitudes to what was acceptable then changed when Schumi was ruling F1, and suddenly he was expected to abide by standards , the likes of Senna and Co would have failed as well

    in his second career he basically just drove for fun as a speed junkie

    Rosberg even raved about him as a team-mate, and Schumi genuinely did not even seem to be bothered that the younger driver was getting more points

    the legend had mellowed

    [Reply]

    Scott D Reply:

    “Schumi being a “cheat” or “guilty” of transgressions is pretty much a very English obsession” – are you in fact denying these accusations or merely asserting that the English have an obsession with facts?

    It is also interesting to note that this behaviour is actually a sign of “toughness”. Oh, it all makes sense now…

    [Reply]

    Tim Reply:

    “Schumi being a “cheat” or “guilty” of transgressions is pretty much a very English obsession”

    I’m not English but American, and I too am “obsessed” with the very real and physical, nuerological concepts of being a “cheat” or “guilty”. Just what part of right/wrong – ethical/unethical – moral/immoral, rules/rule breaking, DO YOU NOT UNDERSTAND? Whether James is correct in his assumption that Schumacher has, belatedly, accepted the fact that he “crossed the line of acceptability”, is moot, as far as I’m concerned. You score NO/NONE/NADA/ZERO/ZILCH/NIL points with me, after the fact! When the pressure was on, Schumacher collapsed under its weight and the world saw the raw slice if an infantile mind. Most people develop a healthy way to deal with it. Schumacher never did. And one last point. He didn’t learn how to lose on the second go-round – the expectations would be so low and the excuses available, so plentiful, that he couldn’t lose. This was all hashed out between all the parties concerned BEFORE he put ink to paper with his signature. But marketers will confirm that the vast majority of the public are naive, gullible and easily manipulated. What we saw was, primarily, a “pr image-building” exercise. And don’t think it was a waste of $$$$. It succeeded. Remember, Daimler sells cars. Daimler sells cars. Daimler sells cars. And there’s more than one way to (skin a cat) sell a car.

    Tim

    [Reply]

    zombie Reply:

    Your caps lock seems to be stuck, and un-paragraphed sentences are hurting my eyes!

    Please remind me how many times Damon Hill barged into Schumacher in 1995 ? How many times did DC barge into cars 2007 or 08 ?

    As for the pressure, you mean, the pressure was not on him to take win between 1991 and 2006 ? LOL!

    [Reply]

    Tim Reply:

    “Your caps lock seems to be stuck”, you mean like your “LOL!” closing? As regards “un-paragraphed sentences are hurting my eyes!”,
    I was attempting to save space, alas, can’t please everyone, but you have my heartfelt apology (btw, try Henry James for a eye-ball work-out.) The following empty line is just for you.

    OK, break over. Shumacher’s attacks were “with malice aforethought”. This cannot be gainsaid. The evidence is overwhelming. He was singular in his malevolence.

    OK, break over. You are blinded to my words, why, I can’t imagine. The pressure I refer to is of when one is faced with “the high road or the low road” in life. Which is chosen. Schumacher chose the low road. All too often. This is not disputable. And this is how I judge him and others. You clearly have another way of scoring. That’s fine. Let us celebrate our diversity of opinion.

    Regards,
    Tim

    Eric Weinraub Reply:

    Really Tim? Infantile? Having spent most of my life ( I attened my first race in the early 70s Watkins Glenn ) watching F1 I can tell you… Schuey NEVER crumbled… Then I guess Senna ‘crumbled’ at Suzuka. I guess Prost ‘crumbled’ at Suzuka… the list goes on and on and on… Drivers make mistakes. I watched Michael hold off Alonso for most of race at Imola ’06. I watched Michael hunt down Hakkinen at the finale in Suzuka ’00. I watched Michael in the finale in ’06 Brazil at almost 3 second faster a lap… get your facts straight.

    [Reply]

    Tim Reply:

    Yes Eric. Infantile. Been watching F1 since 60′s. At the Glen many times, the bog was “interesting” to say the least. Schumacher, Senna, and Prost all crumbled. You seem not to grasp what true pressure is. And, not incidentally, my point. When the chips are down, and things aint goin’ your way, THAT is when we see the true character of ourselves and others. Hunting down etc etc..please. My facts are straight. They are the public record. You judge solely by results. I, most emphatically, do not. We disagree on a fundamental philosophy of life. It reveals a host of personality TRAITS which differentiate us all. Let’s agree to disagree.

    Regards,
    Tim

    Nick F1 Reply:

    Yes, I support this view as well.

    It was that era where all top drivers did what he did.

    And now the evaluation is changed but Schumi stayed where he is.

    Interesting that what all other top drivers did in the past are not mentioned now or simply hided by those who says about Schumacher’s incindents.

    Everybody says about the safety during a race and at the same time adode Senna, Prost, etc … how it could be all put together ???

    [Reply]

    BlackJackFan Reply:

    I’m with Tim on this…
    It’s just a shame that such erudite reasoning cannot get through to blind prejudice.

    In my opinion, for what it’s worth, too many bloggers are way too blinkered and not open to another point of view. It used to be called debate. Now it’s known as whining…
    About eyes hurting, for example…

    When the OP (apologies for the caps.) is trying to offer objective comment – if you don’t agree, say why… Don’t just whine, guys & gals…
    When all’s said and done, it’s only motor-racing, and I’ve been following since 1959…

    [Reply]


  19.   19. Posted By: Rm
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 12:08 pm 

    James you summed it perfect by saying “he is still the colossus of our sport” and will remain forever!!!!

    [Reply]


  20.   20. Posted By: mark
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 12:31 pm 

    James off topic i know but i have a question for you earlier in the season red bull had something on their car that the fia made them remove. I think it was either the fuel maps or the button for ride height adjustment that no further action was taken on by the fia but it was said at the time the teams could appeal red bulls results at any time this season due to the grey area of red bulls legality on this. so if they do win drivers and constructors titles do you think Ferrari or mclaren will appeal this or not ?
    thanks

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    Good question. I don’t think so because it was handled in a way lots of things like this are handled.

    [Reply]

    mark Reply:

    ok james thanks for that i did wonder with all the fuss that was made at the time with several articals saying at the time the teams could do somthing later on.. for the record i think it would be a shame to end a thrilling championship with a protest.

    [Reply]


  21.   21. Posted By: Rossco
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 12:37 pm 

    I hated this man after the 94 incident, and also the 97 incident. But I wish him all the best, it’s just a sport after all and he seems very humble and relaxed as he nears his retirement. Good on you Schumacher, nobody can deny what you’ve done for the sport.

    [Reply]

    AlexD Reply:

    He is anyhing but humble.

    [Reply]

    Dutch johnny Reply:

    You know him personaly then? Otherwise dont judge a man you don know…

    [Reply]

    AlexD Reply:

    Are you not doing the same thing exactly by saying that he is humble?

    Dutch johnny Reply:

    Where did i say he was humble?

    Elie Reply:

    His cowardly actions on the track and his smugness to the media afterwards suggest he is not humble. Despite him being being a 7 time world champion.. But sorry your right I don’t know the man personally either – nor would I choose too


  22.   22. Posted By: Bru72
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 12:52 pm 

    I’d have really liked to have seen Schumi win one more race. For him, Ross Brawn, and all his fans. With only 4 races remaining, i doubt this will happen.

    [Reply]

    hero_was_senna Reply:

    I’m glad he hasn’t, and hopefully doesn’t

    [Reply]


  23.   23. Posted By: Cedgy
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 1:00 pm 

    “Alonso!” Vettel is faster than you!”

    [Reply]

    Grabyrdy Reply:

    It’ll never happen. 1 – he’s not, and 2 – they’ll never be in the same car.

    [Reply]

    tim clarke Reply:

    number 1) he is too! and 2) never say never!

    [Reply]

    Kay Reply:

    1 – That’s not proven, having had a superior car than the rest for several years and never did Vettel win in a bad car

    2 – Never. There you go I just said it.


  24.   24. Posted By: JB
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 1:02 pm 

    I am so lucky to be alive to witness the best F1 driver in the history of this sport. Thank you Michael!

    Other heroes that I look up to are Sebastian Loeb who is also retiring on a high and Valentino Rossi who has such a great personality.

    [Reply]

    hero_was_senna Reply:

    I fully agree, I attended all the British races between 1982 and 2012, and quite a few others around Europe.
    The best driver to ever grace this sport only performed his magic between 1984 and 1994.

    [Reply]

    Kay Reply:

    I’ve always enjoyed reading your replies =)

    I don’t think there are many of us around that have watched as many GPs as you. If only I watched F1 sooner, I could’ve witnessed Senna’s days :(

    [Reply]

    Elie Reply:

    Senna & Prost – those we’re the days


  25.   25. Posted By: JB
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 1:05 pm 

    About the comments on Vettel. I think Michael is hinting to Vettel to face tougher challenge than Webber. hehe…
    Michael’s advise is also gonna help convince Jackie Steward to count Vettel as ‘one of the greats’.
    IMO, Vettel should continue at RB and be patient about moving to Ferrari.

    [Reply]


  26.   26. Posted By: thejudge13
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 1:24 pm 

    Schumacher: “I’ve had two distinct careers; one where I won everything and the second in which I learned what it means to lose”.

    James I love the idea that this as you suggest is the closest we’ll get to Schumacher “admitting that in his first career he did things which crossed the line of acceptability because he couldn’t stand the idea of losing”.

    Maybe the link is a little tenuous, but most insightful.

    [Reply]

    Davexxx Reply:

    James is remembering that Schumi made a similar comment a week or two back, when he was announcing his retirement, I forget the actual words but he alluded to a few ‘regrets’ for a few of his actions!

    [Reply]


  27.   27. Posted By: Kit
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 1:36 pm 

    Each time I read this sort of news about MSC retiring, it’s always with a heavy heart. Of course, the fact is that every person will have to stop doing what they do best, at some point in time.

    I had missed two chances of meeting him face to face and may never get another to do so, ever.

    Now that he can enjoy the “slower pace” of life with his family, let’s cast aside our different opinions of him and his racing past and wish him well.

    Rgds,
    Kit

    [Reply]


  28.   28. Posted By: Tom Haythornthwaite
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 1:59 pm 

    I (a former huge Schumacher critic) would like to go on record as congratulating Michael for his courage to come back and his mature racing this time around. I wish him the very best in his next career(s).

    [Reply]


  29.   29. Posted By: Lynda
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 2:00 pm 

    Like some of the other people posting comments here, I never thought I would live to see the day when I felt sorry for Michael Schumacher. He comes across as a much more rounded person this time around and I suspect that, despite the disappointments he has had, he has enjoyed this 3 year stint. I, too, cheered for him when he set the fastest qualifying lap at Monaco and felt slightly “emotional” when he achieved a podium finish at Valencia.

    I hope he doesn’t leave Formula 1 completely. He has a wealth of experience which he could pass on to younger drivers.

    Whatever he chooses to do, I wish him well.

    [Reply]


  30.   30. Posted By: Bayan
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 2:15 pm 

    I thought that Armstrong said he didn’t use any performance enhancing drugs. Therefore, shouldn’t it be “alleged systematic use of doping in cycling” since he testified that h didn’t use drugs.

    [Reply]

    zombie Reply:

    “Alleged” ? It was proven last week, and Armstrong did not appeal the verdict.

    [Reply]

    Peter C Reply:

    USADA think they have proved it.

    So do most of the Worlds Press (they just jump on the bandwagon).

    So do Adidas, who have pulled their sponsorship.

    Armstrong has stood down from his own charity.

    So far, he has admitted nothing.

    Has he been found guilty without being properly tried?

    Good cyclist though, drugs couldn’t have done all of it.

    [Reply]

    Davexxx Reply:

    … and many of his team have out and out admitted it!

    [Reply]

    Peter C Reply:

    *Nike

    [Reply]

    f1fan123 Reply:

    he was lying

    [Reply]

    Tim Reply:

    Armstrong had the chance to fight the charges and all of a sudden he loses his nerve and pedals backwards. A coward and disgrace to those who “PLAY CLEAN”, WADA’S slogan (I wish they put some serious teeth behind those words).

    Tim

    [Reply]


  31.   31. Posted By: Sebee
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 2:21 pm 

    By the way James, love the Schumi Lance comparison.

    I have to say, that whole period of sport in early 2000s was amazing if you loved watching F1 and cycling. We knew that what Schumi and Ferrari were doing was simply perfection. And the things that were happening on the stages simply gave you chills. Even then most suspected Lance was doped, but so were many others. And while it’s not an excuse, to us viewers at home watching – we certainly got drama and excitement. Those moments when Lance would look back and Ian and his look would say, “hey, are you ready for what I’m about to unleash”. We expect that type of superhuman perfromance from our professional athletes. So do their sponsors, team managers, coaches. How are they supposed to deliver this day in – day out? I sometimes devilshly think to myself that if steroids are able to deliver that type of sports drama…maybe……

    [Reply]

    Dan Reply:

    I do not like the comparison, because Lance really is a cheat. One might say that large parts of the field have been doped, but that does not mean that it was a level playing field. Lance and his team took doping to a whole new level and thus had a large and very unfair advantage above all others.
    For me that is clearly not entertaining, just disgusting.
    (I would argue that without doping Lance would not have one single TDF win, since other riders had clearly more talent. Before his hardcore doping regime Lance was rather mediocre. So in the end, those better riders have been robbed.)

    [Reply]

    Sebee Reply:

    Of course you are right.

    But there is a small issue of you and I watching the race on a couch eating fish and chips and drinking a brew – not from within the peleton actually doing the sport.

    That means that while to the riders it’s a sport, to us it’s entertainment. And we will only watch if it’s exciting and dramatic – entertaining. We won’t watch if it’s mediocre. Just think of a dull GP – what happens on the forum? That’s right, James has to approve 371 comments about how dull the race was.

    If we won’t watch, sponsors won’t pay, and it snowballs.

    I was never under some illusion that Lance was clean. I didn’t need USADA report to convince me of that. The USADA report is a bit disappointing becuase in the end his friends who were less successful in terms of financial gain told on him. I have to say, that’s a bit of a let down.

    What I find a bit interesting about this whole Lance thing is that we used him to get entertained, to feel good. Others tried to Livestrong in his glow through yellow rubber bands – even though the charity does nothing for cancer research apparently. Corporations used him to sell us bikes, shirts, cars, anything they could. Shows used him to gain viewers. Papers used him to to sell more papers. UCI used him to popularize the sport. And he used them and us all right back to get the most money he could possibly get. If you take emotion out of it, he’s not exactly…how you say…”dumb”. People believe in something too good to be true, and then blame that something for their disappointment when it turns out not to be true. Isn’t that called hypocracy?

    All I remember in those first few years of 2000 is that I was fully entertained by both F1 and TDF. I can’t say I look back at a single one of those stages or TTs and say that I regret watching it. It was all wonderful stuff to watch. I can’t say I regret watching all those steamrolling Schumi wins. “Ross, let’s do 4 stops (no yellow/safety car) for the win to see if it can be done.” Lovely stuff that was. Anyone who says they were not entertained by Lance…lies.

    [Reply]

    Tim Reply:

    I was not entertained by lance. Honest. The essence of any competition, be it ‘tween 2 people, or 2 teams, is God given talent and or hard work vs God given talent and or hard work. Simple.

    When the competition is distorted by cheats, illegal drug use etc, it becomes meaningless. I shan’t spend my honest hard earned money nor the most precious commodity I possess, my time, on fakes, frauds and phonies.

    Tim

    Sebee Reply:

    Sorry Tim, dont believe you. If you watched cycling during Lance era, you were entertained. Perhaps you have remorse now for buying into it. But back then you were entertained.

    Just to be clear, I’m talking about entertainment only. Schumi and Lance can’t be compared on anything else really except how they entertained us.

    The only pure sport is one you play with your kids for fun. Everything else is ruined be money and greed or marketing and PR departments. That’s my view.

    Sebee Reply:

    Maybe ruined is too strong a word. Tainted is a better word. Like tainted blood.

    Tim Reply:

    “There are none so blind as those who will not see”.
    Sebee – Short story:
    Where: Front porch of my parents house
    When: Summer of ’72
    Who: Myself, 2 older brothers & 3 friends – all of us 18 to mid 20′s in age.

    One friend was working on his PHD in phys-ed and sports med at UCLA. He said that while walking thru the gym one day he ran into 2 ML baseball players (well known to anyone who followed baseball). They were sitting on a bench in front of lockers and had some small boxes. They asked him his opinion of them. He recognized them as steroids (illegal drugs, without a doctor’s prescription). He told them so and they laughed and said everyone uses them.
    I’ve many other true stories, but no time/space. This was 40 yrs ago. I’ve watched American sports in particular, and the global scene. So, with an extremely jaundiced eye, acquired thru personal experiences, I view competition with sceptisim, to say the least.

    BTW, as much cheating as goes on in F1, one of the things I liked about it, truthfully, was the fact that at least these guys were putting their a$$e$ on the line. The ’60s & early ’70s were awful for the carnage, but you had the utmost respect for the drivers of that era, not so for the other athletes.

    Sorry for the length of post. I do believe you when you say you were entertained.
    I respectfully must state that, while I’ve no doubt you’re in the majority, part of the problem is being entertained by a cheapened product. Have you not noticed, we now pay more and get less. About everything. And we’re happy about it.lol. We need to demand more for our money. Not accept less.

    Regards,
    Tim

    Sebee Reply:

    BTW Tim, if your name was Francois maybe I would believe you. French seemed yo like Lance as much sd Schumi based on various polls at the time.

    Tim Reply:

    Sebee,
    my final word, believe it or not(lol). ALL polls are paid for. By someone. With an agenda. I was told this by a savvy, grizzled politician from Boston when I was 11 yrs old.
    BTW, enjoyed reading your thoughts.

    Regards,
    Tim

    Sebee Reply:

    Actually Tim, I mentioned it because during those years there seemed to be a poll of most hated athletes in France and Lance and Schumi topped the list for 5 years straight.

    I hear where you are coming from. It is the curse of getting older, seeing things for what they are and being disenchanted with pro sport of all flavors. It is the reality. For me football is at the top. Beside the fixes and diving, how can people love a sport that ends in a draw? It is the ultimate ripoff in my view. Imagine a GP where everyone comes in first. Would be last GP we watch.


  32.   32. Posted By: Johnny Benerba
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 2:58 pm 

    Well it’s a curious thing about motor racing when one person dominates. I do like most drivers including Vettel and Schumacher. The sport thrives when there are battles. And not battles like 2012 where the best tyre preserver wins but when two teams have fantastic cars and a standout driver who go head to head all season. If Schumacher was being brought to the brink every season, he would be hailed as king. Good article nonetheless, it’s always nice to hear people make humbled comments.

    [Reply]


  33.   33. Posted By: Rich C
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 4:07 pm 

    Oh yeah, he’s invented a watch?

    This is PR-speak for somebody paid him a lot of money to put his name on a watch design of theirs.

    It reminds me of that line from Remo Williams: “Watches are a confidence trick, invented by the Swiss.”

    [Reply]


  34.   34. Posted By: thejudge13
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 4:36 pm 

    Just on the Lance Armstrong thing, Darren Heath @f1photographer wrote a piece on his blog suggesting “Schumacher was no better than Lance Armstrong” 26th September.http://wp.me/p2HWOP-5i

    Of course the conclusion to the US authority findings were made public week or so later.

    I think prefer the “stark contrast to..Lance Armstrong” position here than the opinion written by @f1photgrapher. Goes to show I guess – stick to what you do best :)

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    I yield to no-on in my admiration for Darren, but on the subject of Schumacher we disagree!

    [Reply]


  35.   35. Posted By: Val from montreal
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 4:40 pm 

    My personal opinion as to why Schumacher has become more “likable” in his second carreer is for the simple reason that he has’nt won a race as of yet ….If he was driving at a top team and would be fighting for the championship in 2012 , MSC would be even more hated in the eyes of most fans …..and not more liked !! Its easier to like someone who is not a genuine threat than compared to someone who actually IS a threat …. Its human nature … MSC had nothing to prove coming back , he was offered a drive back in to Formula 1 and he took it ….. He tried his best and has no regrets ..The few times these last 3 years that Schumacher had a car capable of his abilities , he did not dissapoint …. Canada 2011 and Monza 2011 comes to
    mind ….. Edge of your seat TV ratings explosion !! Go Michael Schumacher !!!

    [Reply]


  36.   36. Posted By: Tim
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 5:25 pm 

    I’m in awe of this man’s humility. Schumacher is so much more likeable since he’s become mortal. This story has taught me a lot about only rewarding winning. There are 23 other drivers on the grid each year who don’t win. They put in huge amounts of effort and work.

    [Reply]

    Dom Reply:

    Agree, plus he’s still competitive – be interesting to see Lewis’ margin in qualie against Nico next year, particularly in Japan and Monaco. For me it’s a shame he isn’t staying on at Mercedes for another year.

    [Reply]


  37.   37. Posted By: Peter
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 5:54 pm 

    Vettel, Hamilton, Alonso, Raikonnen? All massive names. But all four still very much in the shadow of the man that is Michael Schumacher. His name is still synonymous with the might and brute force of the racing driver. The racing driver today has been tamed by the ever censoring forces of the FIA.

    So perhaps Michael Schumacher – the last great racing driver.

    [Reply]


  38.   38. Posted By: All the time you have to leave the space!
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 6:37 pm 

    I reckon Vettel would easily give Alonso a run for his money at Ferrari easily!

    Jenson was told he was crazy to go against Lewis yet he took it to him every season together and the opinion of gaps was viewed far further apart than what Vettel and Alonso is looking like in the public opinion.

    Vettel is actually very good in a bad car, this season is proof enough, though he already showed it while at Toro Rosso.

    Only because of other drivers like Narain driving into him while going for a podium at Malaysia, him losing his temper with Button at Germany or race ending mechanical issues at Valencia made it look worse than he actually did. Really he was still better than Webber was in the first half of the season while he was having a good start to the season.

    I count easily 45 points lost which could of been easily avoided, either not losing his temper in a easy situation, or just plain luck that had nothing to do with Vettel’s ability.

    With all that avoided he would of still been leading Alonso by 1 point at the halfway stage, not 44 points

    If it was a matter of talent or speed I would of been worried that Vettel was lacking something, but since it actually wasn’t I don’t think Vettel will have trouble matching Alonso at Ferrari as I believe it’s just the case Ferrari only focusing on him all season.

    Vettel is the only driver to be in the top 6 all through this year, so even on a rough half of the season he dug deep and got on with it and silenced a fair amount of people.

    The real scary thing is that he makes Webber look ordinary most of the time, will he do the same to Alonso? The Schumacher fans acted confident against Rosberg and look what happend, same with the Lewis fans when Button came in, look what happend… see the pattern?

    The ones that the media portrayed to be the stronger actually turned out to be weaker than first thought! One is leaving McLaren, the other is retiring…

    [Reply]

    Angelina Reply:

    +1
    Excellent analysis.

    [Reply]

    Krischar Reply:

    Good story to say the least

    There is no way vettel is going to match alonso

    When did vettel performed superbly this season ? only when RBR pulled away from the pack since singapore. (Since singapore three victories inherited one from lewis. Prior to that webber easily outpaced vettel)

    From Australia to monza (RBR was quick maybe on par with mclaren)webber did fared much better than vettel.

    Malaysia – Called narain as cucumber despite his mistake

    Germany – Called lewis Idiot after the race when lewis unlapped himself, went off track and overtook button and then asked for rules clarification after the race. Drove ragged after button beaten him during the pitstops)

    Monza – pushed alonso off the track and showed his antics

    Above all earlier in the season when RBR struggled for consistency vettel was easily beaten by webber

    Vettel fans may dream of him to beat alonso.

    No can match Fernando for his pace, consistency and Hardwork.

    [Reply]

    Phil Too Reply:

    “When did vettel performed superbly this season?…Prior to that webber easily outpaced vettel)”

    I guess in your world view, Spa did not happen…

    [Reply]

    Simmo Reply:

    And don’t forget that Fernando might have beaten Vettel at Spa too, and adding to your list:

    Singapore – Nearly caused a collision with dangerous driving at the restart.

    [Reply]

    Krischar Reply:

    Well put Simmo

    Yes Fernando could have easily finished on podium. He was already P3 in SPA going into Turn 1.

    Vettel was very lucky in Spa to finish second

    Grosjean took Lewis, Alonso and Saubers out of the race easily going into Turn 1

    Vettel did overtook some slow cars in front him to finish 2nd. Nothing spectacular.

    I agree with you about singapore vettel nearly took out Button as well.

    There is imply nothing to get excited about vettel’s driving this season.

    Webber made him look like Ordinary this season quite Often (Latest P1 in Korea) as well.

    It was simply too good to watch vettel face when webber beat vettel for pole in korea

    JB Reply:

    I’m surprised that many thinks RedBull car is fast and not Vettel. Gary Anderson did analysis earlier in the year and showed that RB actually went backwards compared to last year when all other teams went forward. That’s how slow RB were.

    Ferrari-Alonso has been similar to the level as RB-Vettel. i.e. making the best of what is available.

    I think Vettel is easily a good match against Alonso on same equipment. If Vettel likes the set up, he will be way faster especially on qaulifying. Remember, he is only 25 years old, there is more room for this kid to grow. He is just gonna get better and better.

    Alonso has stop congratulating Vettel nowadays as he knows the records Vettel holds is way ahead of Alonso. haha…

    [Reply]

    krischar Reply:

    Records mean nothing more than numbers / stats

    We all know schumacher is great (records). However when pitted against nico schumacher proved to be slower

    You answered my question as well – (If vettel likes the set up). Fernando do not have any like / dislike towards Set up or Car characteristics Fernando can wrestle any car in the grid and produce results. Only other driver who is capable of the doing this to a lesser extent is lewis hamilton not vettel

    F2012 is simply a mighty Howler.

    F10 is the only car decent car which ferrari provided to alonso

    Iam suprised you say RBR are slower than ferrari. Much of the pundits including gary anderson analysis after singapore / japan clearly shows RBR have improved the car

    Until singapore Mclaren had the edge over RBR. However after singapore till korea RBR easily pulled away from mclaren (Nearest challenger). iam sure RBR will have quickest car between korea and brazil easily.

    When did ferrari took pole in dry track conditions last time ? Singapore 2010 (Magical lap from alonso to beat vettel for pole)

    When did ferrari provided alonso a car which has 0.5 to 1 sec advantage in both quali and race trim ?

    Who scored brilliant wins and converted half chances into victory this season ?

    Who struggled with only one victory and lesser points despite having better car than alonso from australia till singapore (For 2nd win inherited from lewis)

    If webber have 7-9 score against vettel driving same car. Iam more than cent % confident fernando will outscore vettel easily driving a same car (Not RB8 v/s F2012)

    [Reply]

    Truth or Lies Reply:

    Fernando is that you?

    krischar Reply:

    One is leaving mclaren ?

    Mclaren have really not shown any interest to win the WDC with lewis this season. Despite starting the season with quickest car Mclaren messed up with pit stops, Refuelling, and reliability issues on lewis car.

    Lewis drove really superbly this season even better than 2007 /2008. (2Nd best driver this season – 1 Alonso)

    Lewis v/s Jenson – No Contest, get real people.

    Lewis is miles quicker than jenson. For some reason mclaren showed interest in jenson beating lewis rather than winning WDC in 2012

    Lewis deserves WDC this season alongside alonso for his amazing driving

    Mclaren have no desire to win WDC despite having quick car 2012 – So well done lewis for leaving Mclaren

    Mercedes move is big risk and gamble for lewis. However i hope 2014 rule changes will help mercedes to build a quick car

    Having said all this iam massive alonso Fan. however i have no troubles in accepting lewis driving was amazing this season and he is quick / exciting to watch.

    [Reply]

    f1fan123 Reply:

    Lewis to Mercedes will be an interesting combo to watch. However Lewis to Ferrari would have been better. A pitty Alonso vetoed this move.

    [Reply]

    Krischar Reply:

    Not really F1fan123

    Ferrari prefer vettel over lewis

    I still firnly believe alonso have no problems driving alongside lewis

    Mclaren have messed the team totally in 2007

    Both Alonso and lewis really like racing each other

    Alonso has no need to veto lewis joining ferrari

    LDM recent article make this clear

    I love to see both lewis and alonso driving for the same team as well

    Thompson Reply:

    This Jenson thing is not fair – Jenson had nothing to lose – get beaten , it was Lewis’s team – beat Lewis good job.

    He would never be judged negatively – Hamilton was the star. In fact next year against Perez will be the one that tells a story.

    [Reply]

    Krischar Reply:

    Truth OR Lies

    It’s not me

    It is Fernando Alonso – The greatest driver in the history of Formula 1

    [Reply]


  39.   39. Posted By: Harvey
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 6:38 pm 

    Despite what personal feelings anyone has about Schumi, winning the driver’s championship seven times with two different teams and 91 races overall is truly amazing. Add to that his longevity of 20 years in the sport. James, I believe there are drivers who win because they drive the best car, like Vettel and Red Bull today. Then there are the truly great drivers, like Schumacher, Senna, Prost, Lauda, Alonso, and Button who are successful despite the equipment. We’ll see if Hamilton and Vettel reach the pinnacle during the rest of their careers.

    [Reply]

    Andrew M Reply:

    Not necessarily disagreeing, but why do you rank Button alongside the others (especially ahead of Vettel and Hamilton)? One of the main charges against him throughout his career is that he only managed to perform when the car was perfect for him.

    [Reply]

    Elie Reply:

    Button– bahahaha… You gotta be kidding

    [Reply]


  40.   40. Posted By: Crusty
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 7:59 pm 

    There is some twittering that the FIA have received a proposal to re-name Rascasse (turn 17 at Monaco): “Schumacher”.

    I think a permanent notice would suffice:
    “Parking Space Reserved”.

    [Reply]


  41.   41. Posted By: Lee
        Date: October 18th, 2012 @ 11:06 pm 

    I’d like to Thank MS for all the years of utter joy in watching him drive.
    I can tell you having been to every single Melbourne GP there was no one visibly faster into turn 6 at Albert park than him and it was a thrill to watch every lap.
    That and Spain 1996 will stay with me forever.
    F1 won’t be the same for me without him at least for a while and I wish he had the motivation for one more year because he was looking good this year despite a car that eats its tyres and a lot of bad luck.
    There’s still 4 to go I hope to see that jump on the podium one more time

    [Reply]


  42.   42. Posted By: Kay
        Date: October 19th, 2012 @ 6:24 am 

    “I’ve had two distinct careers; one where I won everything and the second in which I learned what it means to lose. Yes I’ve learned how to lose. But this has made me more mature and also more patient, my age is part of that. Now I can look back globally on what I have done and I’m satisfied.”

    I used to hate him for the things he did. Now that he’s admitted his wrongs, I forgive him :D

    It takes a BIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIG man to admit wrongs like he does, especially of his calibre.

    [Reply]

    Tim Reply:

    It takes an even BIIIIIIIIIIIIIGER man to NOT do anything wrong, to begin with!

    Tim

    [Reply]


  43.   43. Posted By: dave mingay
        Date: October 19th, 2012 @ 6:32 am 

    He’s a lame duck – go now and get a young driver who wants to be in the Mercedes and who can show what he can do.

    Get someone in there who is desperate to win – and not a quack!

    [Reply]


  44.   44. Posted By: Sebastian
        Date: October 19th, 2012 @ 1:10 pm 

    Sending Gascogne solo sailing over the Atlantic surely is part of a Caterham severance package, or do they just hope he will disappear…

    [Reply]


  45.   45. Posted By: Peter Freeman
        Date: October 19th, 2012 @ 1:32 pm 

    I remember Newey commenting at one point that the regulations seemed to be being changed to suite Ferrari at one point (or saying something to that effect) and being slated in the forums for it. But I wonder if he has not made it a point of principle for himself NOT to go to Ferrari…?

    [Reply]


  46.   46. Posted By: nino
        Date: October 19th, 2012 @ 1:55 pm 

    Dear James, I would have not put Amstrong name on an article about Michael Schumacher. That was way out of order.
    Amstrong was cheating every single time he was getting on his bicycle to race and apparently he was forcing other cyclists to do the same on order to support him.
    Here we are talking of some sort of “organized crime”.

    Michael Schumacher did just commetted a few foul worth a red card.
    This two men cannot share the same article on your blog.

    [Reply]

    James Allen Reply:

    Hence why I talk about the complete contrast between the two

    Read the article before commenting, perhaps ?

    [Reply]

    nino Reply:

    Yes I have red about “the stark contrast” between the two.
    Yet once you write something like that, you still relate the two and Schumacher dos not deserve that.

    [Reply]


  47.   47. Posted By: F1racer
        Date: October 19th, 2012 @ 3:37 pm 

    Schumacher won all he could in his first career. In his second career, he has won the hearts of F1 fans who had bitter acrimony against him.

    So, all in all a successful career for Michael Schumacher the ‘Colossus of F1′.

    We shall miss the legend…

    [Reply]


  48.   48. Posted By: Tifosi
        Date: October 20th, 2012 @ 12:24 pm 

    James -

    First of all, I hope this post makes it through; I always seem to be going into your junk mail for the last few months….

    Having said that, I do believe that what are usually extremely well thought out, unbiased articles, always end up with silly argy-bargy between the readers.

    i cannot understand people calling Schumacher all kinds of names including cheat, and disregarding the phenomenal achievements that he has, while being a very humble and honest person. (Tell me one time when he was not humble or when he was not honest and think twice before making up a list to make sure you dont sound petty.)

    It should be noted that being humble does not mean being a pushover on track.

    Like someone here said, all he did was worth a few yellow cards in soccer, and also every F1 driver before him did the same thing. So why are people so upset with him?? He was the best for 2 decades, and one of the best ever.

    Given that he is only 43, I bet a majority of the readers here are older than him, which begs question about what have they achieved despite living longer in this world?

    I bet no more than a handful of those who wish to bring him down through silly posts, are/were even remotely good at their job. But if you then couple with all other achievements, (like the generosity during his donations for tsunami releaf in 2005), I bet no one here can boast of a record thats remotely worthy of being compared.

    So why do people think they are qualified to rubbish such stellar achievements as well as slander a person like Schumacher?

    Really people here should look at themselves, at what harm they have caused and so on before even getting out of bed, let alone defame anyone else.

    Oh and for all those who uttered the word cowardly, it is cowardly to call someone a coward on internet message boards.

    [Reply]

    Thompson Reply:

    Lol….

    Not everyone is born or has the good fortune to be in Schumachers shoes, in fact turn another corner and Schumacher himself could have ended up a bus driver.

    Everyone is open to critic its not an exclusive right of the famous we can all be judged and assessed by our peers in any walk of life – we all eat, sleep and…er…yeah.

    If you want to hold MS so high thats fine, but it does not make some of his more cowardly indiscreations any less cowardly. No one hates the man, we don’t know him but we can look on and judge him amongst ourselves, nothing wrong with that.

    [Reply]


  49.   49. Posted By: dave mingay
        Date: October 21st, 2012 @ 9:17 am 

    Niki Lauda walked away when he saw the writing on the wall; this is Michael Schumacher’s ‘Lauda moment’, but I guess he wants to do his ‘Lap of Honour’ first.

    The purveyors of Schumacher Memorabilia could have done without the whole Mercedes episode.

    [Reply]


  50.   50. Posted By: dave mingay
        Date: October 25th, 2012 @ 1:35 pm 

    Lame duck (politics), an elected official who is approaching the end of his or her tenure, and especially an official whose successor has already been elected.

    Ref: Wikipedia

    [Reply]


  51.   51. Posted By: Roy Gato
        Date: October 25th, 2012 @ 2:23 pm 

    To use a quip from another sport, Schumacher was the “Dirtiest Player in the Game”. I don’t think there is any other sport, other than professional wrestling, where a participant has been so despicable and loved at the same time.

    The barbarities he pulled in ’94 and ’97 are not simple “professional fouls”. The equivalent in football would be Pelé running up to the Czech goalkeeper in the 1962 World Cup finals and kicking him repeatedly in the balls, while his team mates score and the ref saying that he’s been a naughty boy and will have to sit out the awards ceremony.

    Despite all this, he’s still probably the best racing driver to have ever lived, which makes his actions and subsequent return to F1 all the more bemusing.

    [Reply]

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