Is Schumacher right to return? (Poll)

Michael Schumacher is back in F1

Michael Schumacher is back in F1

Michael Schumacher’s surprise return to F1 raises a lot of questions.

But the most telling one is this: why would the world’s most successful F1 driver risk his mammoth achievements on a comeback to a sport that has changed much in the three years since he left?

Is Schumacher right to make a comeback?

  • Yes (68%)
  • No (25%)
  • No opinion (6%)

Total Voters: 4,070

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By the time the 2010 F1 season starts Schumacher will have passed his 41st birthday – old enough to be the father of several of his rivals.

Although the neck injury which kept him from returning this year has healed, will it be up to F1’s intense 19-race schedule for 2010?

He’s been away from F1 for three years so inevitably he’ll be out of practice compared to his rivals. Since he left F1 has adopted slick tyres (which he last used in 1997), severely reduced the downforce of the cars and, as of next year, banned refuelling. Four of the tracks will also be new to him.

Schumacher is staking an F1 career of unrivalled success – 40 more race wins and two more world championships than anyone else – on a return which could prove an embarrassing final chapter to his career.

Fellow multiple world champions like Jackie Stewart and Alain Prost left on a high as reigning title winners at the peak of their powers. Fernando Alonso denied Schumacher the opportunity to do that in 2006.

At worst, he could find himself in an uncompetitive car or discovering he hasn’t got the motivation to get the job done.

On the positive side, Schumacher will be re-creating his ultra-successful partnership with Ross Brawn – albeit at Mercedes instead of Ferrari. The team began development of their 2010 car early, so there’s every chance he will have a car which allows the winning machine to pick up where it left off.

Even in the latter stages of his career it rarely looked as though he had lost any of his skill. There were a few wobbles towards the end of 2004, which could be attributed to him having switched off after wrapping up the title with four races to spare. But his final race at Interlagos left us in no doubt he exited the sport at the top of his game.

Schumacher’s surprise return is a fantastic development for the sport. It’s hard not to be excited by the prospect of Schumacher in a Mercedes going up against Britain’s champions Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button in McLarens and Alonso in a Ferrari.

But is this the right move for Michael Schumacher? Cast your vote above and leave a comment below.

Schumacher and Mercedes

Image (C) Ferrari spa

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92 comments on Is Schumacher right to return? (Poll)

  1. Is Schumacher right to make a comeback?

    Surely he can do whatever he wants lol and good luck to him…

    • I really think we need an additional follow-up poll on say – “In view of Michael’s comeback, was Button right to move to McLaren”.

      I can’t help but think poor Nico has been dealt a raw deal and perhaps it was insightful for Button to have left when he did. Button challenging Lewis is surely less hazardous than challenging Michael considering how much the team will be even more so stacked towards Michael’s comeback…

  2. Mike "the bike" Schumacher said on 23rd December 2009, 12:25

    Yes best news for F1 since…….. forever!

  3. Nico Rosberg said on 23rd December 2009, 12:32

    I, for one, am quite convinced he’s done a really wrong move to join a team as number two driver!

    • José Baudaier said on 23rd December 2009, 21:01


    • heinz said on 26th December 2009, 9:53

      hehe, number two? does not matter if Schumi is first anyhow. in basic this is beside the point. at his age one can not sit around, am 69 myself. he’s great for the development of the sport, and our future cars!

  4. Omegaz3ro said on 23rd December 2009, 12:43

    I don’t care if he’s right or wrong.

    I want to see him battle with Lewis Hamilton and Jenson (who???) Button.

  5. HounslowBusGarage said on 23rd December 2009, 12:45

    F1 driver’s seats are very limited even with the new teams coming in. Schumacher has taken one of those seats; so which other driver will be left off the grid as a result? Heidfeld?

  6. Yes IMO – he wouldn’t be doing if it fitness and strength were an issue, and although his reflexes will be off marginally from his peak, they were preternatural anyway.

    My main query would be whether the car will be up to a championship run… I’ve no doubt he’ll wipe the floor with Blondie Bear. :)

  7. three4three said on 23rd December 2009, 13:02

    I voted yes. If he can, and he’s likely still to be able to win races, then why not?

    I also agree with PM on the first comment that Schumacher is returning not to prove anything but because of the pure bug for racing.

  8. Yes. Simply because it is what he wants to do. I agree that he was rather shuffled out of his seat at Ferrari, maybe his passion was on the wane then, but seemed an awkward exit. Does he still have the ability? I think so, certainly has the race craft to go wheel to wheel with the best of them, but it was always his mental strength that made him the best, ruthless devil that he was.

    I don’t think there’s any question of Michael risking his reputation – he’s the only 7 time WDC in the sports history and holds nearly every F1 record going, that must put his credibility beyond doubt. 2010 is a gift for fans and younger racers alike and the dream team of Ross and Mercedes piloted by Schumacher, well, you couldn’t make it up.

    As an old Hill fan, I hated him with a vengence, but can’t wait to see him back.

  9. Maciek said on 23rd December 2009, 13:18

    I’m cheaply reposting my comments here, but for me it goes like this:

    1. New generation gets to go up against the last dominating figure in the sport
    2. The last dominating figure in the sport gets to be tested without previous advantages
    3. More free publicity to go around for everyone than all of Bernie’s money could buy

    Can anyone name one negative side to this that outweighs any of these points?

  10. The Limit said on 23rd December 2009, 15:15

    I voted no! As exciting as the prospect of Schumacher’s is for the sport, I believe Michael made the right decision back in 2006. Alain Prost did the right thing and retired on a high note, but at the end of the day it is up to how the driver feels.

  11. al_amana said on 23rd December 2009, 16:00

    Season’s Greetings to all.

    Oh and what a way to usher in the new year.

    He’s back and I believe he’s doing it for the love of the sport and nothing else. His achievements are what they are. Alonso denied him his swan song but I don’t believe Michael is looking for redemption.

    In F1 there are and always has been a few people that not only define the sport but care for it. Being one of those people I believe Michael chose to leave the sport when he did because he knew that something wasn’t right. The last three years have brought about a lot of change for the better, as we know. Yet as we also know there has been a lot of controversy and ugly goings on for this change to come about. I believe that the reason Michael left when he did was because he didn’t want to be a part of this mess. So now that there appears to be a bright future for the sport of F1 he has returned to not only further his own legacy but to be a part of the new age of F1. He might not win another WDC but at least I got to see him go around again. Should be a fun 2010!

  12. Don’t forget during that test at barcelona, i think in 2008, he ended with the best times. He’ll be on the pace.
    Also you have to remember, that the cars are less powerfull than with the v10, so it would be easier to adapt.
    He might be winning races at his third attept like lauda in 1982.
    May be even before.

  13. Pedel to the Vettel said on 23rd December 2009, 16:45

    If schumacher wins 1 more world title he has done a good risk, because who in moderen F1 at the time now is going to beat that?

  14. I am huge fan of Schumi. I have been following him since his very very initial days of 93. But I really did not want him return mainly because

    1) I don’t want his golden career to look bad just because of this comeback. People saying later that Schumi is not good as Vettel, Sutil, Lewis etc.

    2) I don’t want Vettel to lose his Title next year just because Schumi came out of retirement and swept the field away.

    3) Nico will also have a tough time. He is a very good driver and was almost losing out because Williams was not a strong car. He will be nowhere close to the Ross-Michael combo….yeh he will get nurtured like Felipe which will be good for him…..

    I DONT Feel a bit for Ferrari because they were the guys who forced him into retirement and now they cannot cry about that.

    Again it is great show for F1. Great publicity for Mercedes. The No 1 Mclaren of Button would be somewhere lost in the showdown. Poeple will be looking at how Lewis is against Schumi… Nobody will care for Lewis vs Jenson fight. And since Jenson had raced against Micheal almost for 6 years and was handsomely beaten all those years nobody will look at that.

  15. David A said on 23rd December 2009, 17:38

    I feel that Michael Schumacher has little to lose from returning. If he doesn’t perform well, then yes, we will look back on 2010 and claim that Schumacher ended his career at a low point, not being competitive and claim that the idea was a mistake. However, in this case some will put forward the argument that he will be racing at the age of 41, which in modern times is very old for an F1 driver. However if he were to come out of retirement and blitz this generation’s field, everybody will claim it was a masterstroke. Either way, coming out of retirement to take on Hamilton, Vettel and the rest took sheer guts.

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