Gene: “Schumacher almost rejoined Ferrari”

Michael Schumacher would have made an F1 comeback for Ferrari instead of Mercedes, reckons test driver Marc Gene.

Writing on his blog for Spanish newspaper El Mundo Gene claims Schumacher would have been the third driver at Ferrari in 2010 had the regulations allowed him him to race.

That would have meant Schumacher teaming up with his 2006 title rival Fernando Alonso as well as Felipe Massa.

It goes some way towards explaining Luca di Montezemolo’s doleful remarks about Schumacher’s “twin brother, identical in every way, who seems to have it in his head to go and race in Formula 1 with Mercedes.”

I’m torn between whether I’d rather see Schumacher return to Mercedes, the team that helped him get his break in international motor racing, or take on Alonso at Ferrari. What do you think?

And did Ferrari give any serious thought to giving Massa the elbow so they could have a Schumacher-Alonso dream team?

Read more: Why three-car teams isn?t a great idea

Advert | Go Ad-free

30 comments on Gene: “Schumacher almost rejoined Ferrari”

  1. Ned Flanders said on 29th December 2009, 12:58

    In theory, Alonso/ Schumi/ Massa as Ferrari team mates would have been great, but even Ferrari wouldn’t have the resources to run 3 cars equally. I thought their 3 car idea was to contract out one of their cars to a new team to run?

    • Prisoner Monkeys said on 29th December 2009, 21:32

      Nope – seems Luca wanted three cars for Ferrari. I’d say he was very taken with the idea of all three steps on the podium being Ferraris because the team could afford to buy the three best drivers available. It would basically usher in a brand-new era of Ferrari dominance (and one that I think would drive many a casual fan away – watching races where only one person ever wins is one thing, but who wants to watch races when only one team is any good?). It strikes me as Luca’s plan to secure Ferrari’s future in the sport after their threat of withdrawal by demanding special treatment that would result in their renewed competitiveness. Even if they didn’t get the WDC, Ferrari would be basically assured of the WCC.

    • If anyone has the resources to field a third car, it’d be Ferrari. The cost of fielding a third car actually wouldn’t be all that much more. It’s not like it’d suddenly increase Ferrari’s budget by 1/3 to field a third car. Remember that the vast majority of the cost of running an F1 team is in R&D and other aspects. The actual building of the cars and parts is minimal compared to their other expenditures. They could easily revamp their production process to plan for, and create parts for a third car for and during the season.

  2. arun srini said on 29th December 2009, 13:30

    As much I am a Schumi fan, I totally respect Ferrari’s legacy and racing purity through their years. Schumi plus Todt plus Brawn made the team come up from the ashes to victories, and so its ok if he chooses to race for Merc, with Brawn again, totally understandable. Yes, it would be faithful and all for him to come back to Ferrari, but one should stop for a moment and think, did Ferrari get more because of schumi or was it the other way around??
    Also, Ferrari letting go of Kimi was very sad moment, showing much of the current team’s notions.. so I am happy to see my racing hero take on this new avatar…

  3. Jabbawokwok said on 29th December 2009, 13:33

    It was quite right they should retain Massa provided he was fit to race. Ferrari have engineered him to become a fantastic driver. Alonso and Massa are, at 28, still young enough to campaign for another seven or eight years.

    I have no doubt that Michael will be competitive next year but, at 41, that performance has to drop off soon. He will not be at his peak. In equal cars, Michael would struggle to match Massa and Alonso now. Ferrari have to look ahead, not back.

  4. F1withMySon said on 29th December 2009, 13:36

    That is absolutely what Ferrari should have done – drop Massa for Schumacher! I’ve never been a Massa fan, I’m glad he’s healthy, but I don’t think he’s a very good driver. Next year should be Schumacher / Alonso at Ferrari, now that would be interesting!

    • matt90 said on 29th December 2009, 22:15

      I think the same. I reckon that if Massa hadn’t gotten hurt, they would have replaced him with Schumacher at the end of the season. But as he got injured, it would have appeared too heartless to drop him. In fact, if Massa hadn’t gotten hurt and Kimi had beaten him, it could have been Massa moving aside for Alonso.

      • Maciek said on 30th December 2009, 3:48

        Yeah right – so they kept a driver for next year not because they think he gets the job done but just so they wouldn’t look bad – that’s schoolboy theories, not how things work at that level.

    • bettyhiam said on 29th December 2009, 22:44

      Oh please! Not a Schum-Alonso pairing! Two German drivers will deliver more in interest and competition. I’m looking forward to a two-Brazilian line up. I think same-nationalities think alike! Alonso won’t have to have someone carve a way to the front for him again, will he? Never could admire that man.

  5. Bartholomew said on 29th December 2009, 14:07

    Much more fun to have The Kaiser at Mercedes and Alonso at Ferrari.
    Alonso sent Schumacher into retirement and now might beat him again.
    2010 will be a good year for racing! maybe as good as 2007

  6. wasiF1 said on 29th December 2009, 14:10

    Three car team is absolute bonkers!!I think Michael did a good job by returning to Mercedes who gave him the break in F1.I think Mercedes tried to have Michael in Mclaren 3 times but they failed.

  7. wong chin kong said on 29th December 2009, 14:12

    Why Ferrari did not go all out to retain Michael Schumacher for 2007 drive? They let him go in retirement; even if Ferrari thought Schumacher was going down hill in 2006, surely they should give him a change to prove himself in 2007 and subsequent years? Did Schumacher just felt tired of F1 racing, which I don’t think so. I speculate that he must suffered from some temporary lack of confidence to race with Kimi. Of late, Schumacher said he did not know he had so much passion in him to race in F1, the trigger came when Massa got injured and Michael was asked to replace him. In my mind, Ferrari never did want Michael to take Massa place on a permanent basis because Ferrari viewed Michael as over the hill and only deserved a third place ranking only.

  8. James_mc said on 29th December 2009, 14:15

    Call this controversial, but I think that had Massa not been injured they would have seriously looked at ditching him. However as Massa was injured the negative backlash of publicity would have been incomparable if they had ditched him.

    Then again if Massa hadn’t got injured would we ever have had this opportunity to see Schumi again?

    • steph90 said on 29th December 2009, 16:46

      Interesting point but I don’t subsrcibe to that view. With Massa injured it would be the perfect time to show him the door. Ferrari won’t be a hostage to anyone especially not the media. This is a tough business but it is business, sentiment can only take you so far.
      Schuey he’s great for a year or so but Massa (or whoever replaces him when his contract is up) is right for the long term.

    • matt90 said on 29th December 2009, 22:17

      I think exactly the same. If he hadn’t gotten injured we could well be seeing Raikkonen/Alonso or Alonso/Schumacher next year (provided Schumacher still rediscovered his passion).

    • Maciek said on 30th December 2009, 3:51

      That’s just not serious. Massa beat Raikkonen last year and would have beat him this year, too. How is he the weak link?

      • How do you know Massa would have beat Räikkönen this year? Räikönen was WDC in his first year at Ferrari, handily beating Massa.

        • steph90 said on 30th December 2009, 9:41

          Problem is Massa’s form completely changed and he delivered to a much higher standard in 08 and 09 (where he was beating Kimi before the accident) compared to 07.
          LdM said previously that Kimi and Alonso would not be a good pairing.
          This is Ferrari here too and they aren’t afraid of anyone. If they can take the best then they will. I think they’re being underestimated :P

  9. I would say Ross Brawn lost a small spring from the rear of his car in hungary and got Schumi in return for next year. That was not a bad deal at all !!!!!

    Frankly Alonso and Schumi in Ferrari would have created all sorts of fluctuations in Ferrari in name of Loyalty vs Future. Schumi would rather be happy with Brawn than Luca. I remember before announcing the retirement in Monza 06, schumi got out of the car went to Jean and Brawn after winning the race. Luca was standing there and cheering. He did not even turn to Luca. Giving a clear indication that he was not the greatest friends with him and also that Luca muscled him out. In fact after Schumi left, Brawn also left Ferrari to go fishing. Jean Todd followed an year later. Rory Byrne also joined Brawn recently. It was getting clear that the Team was Jean-Brawn-Schumi-Byrne. Ferrari was just a platform for them. If that platform can be recreated they will be happy with it. The team is now Brawn-Schumi-Byrne. Jean standing on the top with his blessings as always :)

  10. Steve_P83 said on 29th December 2009, 15:54

    I’m a big fan of Massa, so I’m glad Schumacher didn’t take his seat to return to Ferrari. It would have been perfect for me if Ferrari could have signed Schumacher and let Alonso go somewhere else. I know and freely admit that Alonso is a great driver, but I just do not like his personality and lots of his decisions.

  11. Mark Hitchcock said on 29th December 2009, 20:34

    And did Ferrari give any serious thought to giving Massa the elbow so they could have a Schumacher-Alonso dream team?

    I think that would have been a nightmare. Two drivers who are used to being number 1 suddenly thrown together in one team *cough*Hamilton/Alonso*cough* is bound to end in tears.

    • Terry Fabulous said on 29th December 2009, 21:50

      Yes good point, may I also draw your attention to Senna-Prost and Raikonnen-Montoya to name two. Doesn’t bode well for Button-Hamilton really.

      Do you think that in years to come Luca Di Monty wil come to regard elbowing Schumi aside for Raikonnen an enormous mistake?

      • steph90 said on 30th December 2009, 9:46

        Do you think that in years to come Luca Di Monty wil come to regard elbowing Schumi aside for Raikonnen an enormous mistake?

        Good question Terry. Well they did get the driver’s once with him and constructor’s x2 so it was still an impressive relationship. And I think things have worked out-they have Alonso now and he is the future while Schuey as brilliant as he is, has a very limited amount of time left in the sport.

        • Terry Fabulous said on 31st December 2009, 9:11

          Yeah I suppose you are right there Steph, I would hardly call two constructors titles and one drivers a period of failure.

          I must have had my pair of anti-Kimi blinkers on!

          Happy new year Mate!

  12. F1Yankee said on 29th December 2009, 22:18

    the whole 3 cars per team idea is for the birds.

  13. I always been a Ferrari and a Shumacher fan, but let´s not forget that 3 years without competition and all the technical changes will have is toll on Shumacher, i would prefer he be seated and wacthing the action!
    Shumacher has to realise that the driving circuits are different,technical changes are different and that many young and talented drivers are just waiting to prove themselves better now, i think the F1 next season will have many personal battles, especialy with Shumacher!
    Alonso enjoys beating Shumacher and has the upper hand on him, if Shumacher is not on the Podium in the first 2-3 races, mentally he´ll suffer the rest of the season and possibly will regret it for many years, nevertheless as a F1 fan for more than 25 years, i just hope the Racing will be back to the track!

  14. Shumacher/Alonso @ Ferrari… that thought did cross my mind but I just couldn’t believe it was possible.

    Something tells me Massa will be having a difficult season in 2010 and Alonso will do better than him.

  15. chrishooke said on 30th December 2009, 10:05

    Good luck to Michael. When he came to Ferrari, the great team was a joke. The cars he had to drive were dogs, yet he still got the results no other driver at the time could have done. He made Ferrari the success they are along with Ross Braun and Jean Todt, but he would have had quicker success if he had took the easy route and gone to Williams Renault. I think all Ferrari fans should wish him luck and look forward to a fantastic 2010 season.

Add your comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

All comments must abide by the comment policy. Comments may be moderated.
Want to post off-topic? Head to the forum.
See the FAQ for more information.