Did Michael Schumacher’s Spa stunt set a new low? Nico Rosberg thinks so

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

He'll be back next year - but will the controversies return too?
He'll be back next year - but will the controversies retiurn too?

Who does Nico Rosberg blame for poor driving standards in F1? His new team mate:

It is Michael Schumacher who started this, like at Spa, when Mika Hakkinen tried to overtake him and he ran him off the track. When the guy behind has made a decision [to pass] and the guy in front then moves over, it is very dangerous. You cannot do that. That was the first time I remember it being a dangerous issue.
Nico Rosberg

Schumacher’s return to F1 is undoubtedly good news for the sport’s profile but, as Rosberg clearly knows, he tends to bring controversy along with him.

Hakkinen and Schumacher were both doing around 200mph when the McLaren driver tried to pass the Ferrari.

The onboard video above graphically illustrates the speed difference between the two cars as Hakkinen pulled out of Schumacher’s slipstream to pass. But the Ferrari driver squeezed Hakkinen to the far side of the track, forcing him to back off to avoid a huge crash.

Schumacher often stood accused of getting away with dangerous driving. This infamous move drew criticism at the time (in spite of Hakkinen’s successful pass on the next lap). Almost ten years on, do we now view this as a new low in driving standards that other drivers are now mimicking because they know they will get away with it?

Rosberg was talking to reporters in Abu Dhabi at the race earlier this year when he compared recent controversial incidents at Interlagos with Schumacher’s Spa move. Here’s more of what he said:

Barrichello, Webber and Kobayashi did exactly the same thing [at Interlagos]. With Webber, Raikkonen lost his front wing, with Kobayashi, Nakajima had a massive off, which could have been much worse – you can really hurt yourself, marshals and others in that sort of accident. With Barrichello, Lewis ran into the back of his tyre. That was the third time ?ǣ and it is not allowed to happen.
Nico Rosberg

Rosberg’s comment struck me as surprising at the time because drivers are rarely so candid about this sort of thing. It came on the same weekend that Jarno Trulli vehemently criticised Adrian Sutil over their crash at Interlagos.

While Trulli spent ten years racing against Schumacher, drivers like Sutil are part of the post-Schumacher generation – who watched him at work, seen what he could get away with, and copied it.

It’s true that other drivers before Schumacher were accused of using unacceptable tactics on the race track – Ayrton Senna and Rene Arnoux to name just two. But it seems to me that Schumacher pushed the limits even further – into dangerous territory.

Another dimension to Schumacher’s return is how Mercedes will handle it. We saw at Monaco in 2006 that Ferrari would support Schumacher even when he was caught red-handed in a brazen act of cheating. Will Mercedes be as willing to indulge Schumacher’s ‘win at any cost’ mentality?

That was one of the rare occasions when Schumacher was handed a meaningful punishment for his transgression. More often than not the FIA turned a blind eye to his dubious moves. So should we blame them or Schumacher for some of the questionable driving which goes on in F1 today?

Whichever, I doubt we’ll get to the end of 2010 without this argument coming up again.

Driving standards in F1

144 comments on “Did Michael Schumacher’s Spa stunt set a new low? Nico Rosberg thinks so”

  1. again great article Kieth! But this does bring an interesting point and i am sure that Shumacher will continue this reckless driving. although i think that when you are driving at speeds over 200mph you cant really think straight which might cause this type of driving.

    1. i agree. Schumacher will continue with this kind of driving and since he will probably be a bit less competitive than he is still used to, he’ll do everything and anything to suceed, and that means moves like in Adelaide 94, Jerez 97, Spa 2000,
      Australia 2005 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aBD8wOcVZNc – Something that could happen in Spa if Mika didn’t back off!), Monaco 2006 are nothing compared to what he’ll do next.

      But it might be fun…on one side, he’s not in Ferrari no more, so maybe he’ll get punished, but on the other side his buddy To(a)dt is president of the FIA now, plus he has Brawn(who seems to have some influence on the FIA – all controversial car parts back at his time at Ferrari and even last year at Brawn GP were legalised for some reason) as his boss so he might get away with a lot more than before.

      1. Terry Fabulous
        31st December 2009, 9:32

        Rosberg is right, Schumi used to drive like a jerk when someone tried to overtake him, and when it all fell apart from him, like in Stan’s video above, it used to crack me up!

        But he is a goose for saying it. It will just stoke a fire in the belly of the most doggedly competitive driver ever seen in our sport.

        Nico should quietly slink off for a month to tend to his hair and make no further public comments! Leave his talking to the track.

        1. Does anyone remember this? I think we should bring Montoya back now that Schumacher is back.

          BTW Rosberg said that before he had any idea about Schumacher and Mercedes. He said it after Brazil when he was asked in an interview.

          1. I didn’t remember this one. Shumi is not that great….

          2. I didn’t remember this one. Shumi is not that great….

            No one will take that seriously “Eddie Irvine”.

        2. Nico and all other f1 drivers if u can call them that, should know when to keep quite. He fails to realize that the sleeping giant is now awake.

        3. His father din’t like Schumacher at all.

      2. Perhaps the reason that any controversial new car parts on a car Ross Brawn has been involved with are found to be legal is that he is just very good at interpreting the rules…

    2. i think that when you are driving at speeds over 200mph you cant really think straight which might cause this type of driving.

      Quite the opposite. Racing drivers are thinking very clearly at that sort of speed…

    3. I, too, agree with president Nixon. I think the drivers rely on their instinct when they are racing at such high speeds. I also think it’s the job of the FIA race stewards to comment on the driver’s driving style and, if necessary, punish him.

    4. not to worry. those days are gone. the best he will do is the occasional podium. best of luck to his new teammate. ( but it will be interesting when Alonso puts a pass on him )

  2. He’ll be back next year – but will the controversies retiurn too?

    I reckon they will for sure. He’s only on a 1 year contract with Mercedes, I think he’ll go all out.

      1. 1 year and a option for 2 more

  3. Prisoner Monkeys
    31st December 2009, 7:55

    Well, I suppose the Rosberg-Schumacher partnership can only get better from here …

    1. Hmm… this immeadiately reminded me of something I read in F1 Racing last year, an article on the drivers football match they have at Monaco every year:

      ‘There’s a bustle of activity near the tunnel… (out) comes Michael Schumacher… intriguingly, he blanks Nico (Rosberg), then runs straight towards Felipe (Massa). They embrace and exchange high fives.’

      Not sure how significant this is, but my initial feeling is that they ain’t the best of buds

  4. After all the crap Schu pulled in his career, the lowest was Monaco. How could the 7x WDC, blatantly do what he did at La Rascasse? He stops his Ferrari at the La Rascasse corner to block the progress of other cars. Then on camera in front of the whole world makes more than one attempt to finally shut down the engine on his Ferrari. He tops it off with cockpit acting gestures. How does this athlete sit atop your F1 pedestal?

    1. Monaco was an absolute disgrace, but I think what Rosberg is voicing has more to do about safety than cheating per se.

      The worst part about that incident was Schmacher not admitting he was being a tit.

    2. bernification
      3rd January 2010, 23:01

      You think cheating to gain pole competes with ramming your opponents to attempt to win a world championship? And not once, but twice even if he was aquitted in ’94. It’s still dubious.

      1. Senna did it all the time.

  5. its okay no need to worry mark webber is here to blitz the 2010 season .. BRING IT ON.

    1. Terry Fabulous
      31st December 2009, 9:17

      Ken I admire your spirit, Happy New Year Mate!

  6. I want to see more of that in 2010.

  7. I thought it was Schumacher and Hill at Spa (I think in 95 but it may have been 94) that started this rather than against Hakkinen. Hill was always vocal in a very English and understated way that Schumachers driving standards were below par.

    I suppose though, on the other hand that if you’ll do anything to win then its only natural. There’s a reason Schumacher has all the records

  8. There have been a few pondering whether it was known for a while that Schumi would be heading to Merc and Button was on his way out. Personally I always thought things only got moving afer Abu Dhabi and still do. Some mightb question whether Nico knew about Merc’s intentions and this was an little jab for his future teammate, whether he seems completely unaware or that hiring Schumi wasn’t decided until much later.
    I think Merc will dop the usual policy and give the drivers equal status for as long as it suits them. If Schuey is his usual self and Nico is behind but they take points from each other then that waouldn’t get them anywhere. That said Nico is a highly rated driver and very young; a good long term bet so they won’t want to fall out with him. Unless they are looking to drivers like Seb and Lewis for the future and if Nico doesn’t pass the test…but I’mn getting wellm ahead of myself there :P

  9. This acticle perfectly sums up what I’ve been thinking about Shumi’s return, and, as far as I can tell, a pretty common thought among fans who followed F1 before Schumi got in.

    However I am also surprised that Rosberg would actually go out and say it. My respect for him has just shot through the roof.

    1. Worth remembering Rosberg said this two months before Schumacher was announced as his team mate. I wonder if he had had any idea in October that he might be team mate to Schumacher next year?

  10. I’m not sure this one incident makes young drivers think they can get away with similar moves. My overwhelming memory of that race is Hakkinen being celebrated for a brave overtake, a fine victory and then admonishing Schumacher while the German sat meekly in his Ferrari in Parc Ferme. I think the message to aspiring young F1 drivers was fairly clear – who would you prefer to emulate?

    It is true, however, that the younger generation of drivers has grown up watching Schumacher and perhaps inferring that it must be acceptable if he gets away with it. But Spa 2000 wasn’t a one off and it merely reflected Schumacher’s general approach to defending his position on track. It was this, coming race after race, that will have sown the seed that this sort of thing is ok rather than any one incident. But examples of poor driving standards were around before Schumacher and they’re still around after Schumacher.

    It may be convenient to point out Schumacher for the lowering of driving standards, but other drivers and the governing body must also shoulder their share of the blame. This is a problem, but it isn’t one that began with Schumacher and it won’t be one that ends with him.

    1. Totally agree with you Tim. I’m sure there’s quite a list of driver’s who’ve been “driven off the track” by Schumacher, but we shouldn’t forget that when he was young he was a product of his time, where Senna was setting the standards of behaviour.

      Schumacher pushed the limits in every respect, and the sport kept having to change because of him. No-one ever exerted such influence, but there’s a price for greatness.

      Rosberg’s a bit young to authoritatively state where it began – I think if you’re gonna say who really started it all, you’ve got to say Senna. When you have a standard of behaviour that’s being set, “escalation” is inevitable, especially in a hard-fought competitive sport like F1.

      1. Rosberg’s a bit young to authoritatively state where it began – I think if you’re gonna say who really started it all, you’ve got to say Senna.

        Looking at specific examples, I think it’s fair to say Schumacher knew he’d get away with Jerez ’94 because of how the titles were decided between Senna and Prost in 1989 and 1990.

        But while Senna undoubtedly took the tactic of swerving across on your rival to a new extreme – pushing Prost up against the pit wall at Estoril in 1988, for example – he didn’t go so far as to force his rival to back off to avoid a crash. He left Prost just enough room to get through. Schumacher took it further – he moved all the way across on Hakkinen at Spa and he put Alonso on the grass at Silverstone in 2003.

        1. As pointed out by many, Schumacher was not the first to employ such tactics, and he won’t be the last. Regarding the “fatal danger”, yes I tend to agree with Keith on this one. Schumacher did the same what Senna did, but at higher speeds, and at higher risks.

          And talking about putting your opponents on the grass, Alonso (Spa ’07) and Hamilton (Monza ’08) have quite a reputation for the same.

          The Monaco ’06 incident was indeed a shocking one. But I fail to understand, a driver, who committed Adelaide ’94 and Jerez ’97, would come up with such a lame tactic. Surely, he could have crashed into the wall at low speed, it would have concealed his blocking move much better.

    2. Top post Tim.

      No-one can deny Schumacher did dodgy things and even broke the rules on occassion but as usual the anti-Schumacher brigade have to go into hysterics. Perhaps they forget that Senna drove into Prost at high speed in an era when safety wasn’t nearly as good as today, or just choose to.

      1. Senna and Prost took rivalries in F1 to a new high and well, as a consequence some things happened on the track and off the track. Senna said that he will ram off Prost at the first corner and he did and won the championship as a result.

        I guess i do not know what some people have against Schumacher, who i know is not the fairest of them all, but are current drivers as Tim said, any better? Lewis comes to mind immediately, he did LIE and there are other questionable incidents involving him. These are racing drivers and when they are pyscho-evaluating them, they check whether these guys have huge enough an ego, which is a must. Most of these guys couldn’t tolerate the thought of being overtaken… in any sense, leave alone on-road.

        Jeremy Clarkson in his interview with Schumacher summed up ’94 Adelaide nicely, “i won’t let you win cos i’m simply better than you…” But it’s not just Schumacher, Senna drove many people off the track in days when people were maimed or died in an accident and i will have hundreds and thousands proclaiming him to be the greatest grand prix driver ever. Infact, he recently WAS voted the greatest grand prix driving ever. Senna had no love for backmarkers… and for opponents. He just wanted to be left alone, to do fast laps after another and another. Schumacher should be seen in the same vain… You could say that Senna didn’t cheat or lie, but Senna didn’t always win fairly.

        Racing drivers want to win.

    3. My overwhelming memory of that race is Hakkinen being celebrated for a brave overtake, a fine victory and then admonishing Schumacher while the German sat meekly in his Ferrari in Parc Ferme. I think the message to aspiring young F1 drivers was fairly clear – who would you prefer to emulate?

      I can think of lots of drivers who’ve named Michael Schumacher as a role model.

      I can’t think of any that have said the same about Mika Hakkinen.

      1. I meant “who would you prefer to emulate at Spa 2000?” – I don’t think the drivers who see Schumacher as a role model would pick that race as his finest hour and an individual performance they would wish to repeat.

        My point was that singling out Spa 2000 (where Schumacher was and still is widely criticised for his actions) as the start of poor driving standards is wrong. If anything, the blame that should be attached to Schumacher is that he drove like that routinely (not just at Spa 2000) and generally escaped punishment for it. In my view that had a stronger, albeit more insidious, influence on young drivers than a single incident.

        Driving standards have been in decline from well before the Schumacher era. You’re right about Senna leaving just enough room at Estoril ’88, but it was highly controversial at the time and a big step towards where we are today.

  11. Does nobody remember Canada ’98 when he drove off Frentzen?

    1. Good point, but hadn’t he just not seen Frentzen on that occasion?

  12. Hear hear Rosberg.

    He’s totally right, especially about the Interlagos incidents. Kubica spoke out in 2008 and I’m pleased someone else is not afraid to do so because before long we will have a very big shunt.

    While everyone has been praising Kobayashi, he could of killed Nakajima (no exaggeration) in my opinion and people seem quick to forget that fact.

  13. does nobody remember Suzuka ’90? I don’t see any vehement bashing about that over here..or Hamilton at Monza 2008

    1. Read my post above. I mention Kubica commenting on Hamilton’s driving.

    2. or Hamilton at Monza 2008

      We did that to death at the time. See here: Four of F1’s ‘unwritten rules’ (Video)

      1. Still, the move hardly sets a “new low” when 10 year earlier Senna drove at 200 km/h straight into another car on purpose.

    3. I think there hasn’t been much mention of Hamilton at Monza 2008 because the discussion is more about when this sort of driving became acceptable.

    4. Too True Glue ! Watch some of the youtube videos of Senna when he didn’t have the quicker car….some of his defending was insanely dangerous.

  14. That infamous move by Schuey at Monaco in 2006 was bloody hilarious. How both he and his team could say that it was an error is beyond me. It was a blatently intended incident (and the worst parking i have ever seen) :-P fair enough, schuey has 7 world titles, but c’mon, yes he might have a ‘win at all costs’ mentality, but i drive competitive karts, and i wouldn’t ‘win at all costs’ by parking my kart in the middle of the track?

    1. What really was hilarious was Raikkonen doing exactly the same thing in the same place in qualifying the following season, except he did by accident. Especially when Massa got stuck behind him!

      1. Yeah, funny people don’t mention that now do they?

        Still think Schumi gets stick in that incident for keeping it out of the wall. He may have been going too fast but if he’d pulled it off he would set the pole time for that lap.

        Can’t wait to see the ‘meister’ in action again – even if he’s not in a ferrari.

  15. Surely, these moves are a tad dangerous, but doesn’t that make them rightly part of a tadly dangerous sport?

    If I read the article and most comments I begin to think everyone wants F1 to be a “gentleman’s” sport, with unwritten rules dictating when you can or cannot defend or overtake someone. Yet everyone is complaining about the lack of overtaking. For me, things can get a bit rougher out there on the track.

    F1 drivers in my eyes should have balls beside their ability to drive. They get paid millions for driving a potentially dangerous weapon. They should know this is a part of the game. More often than not the most acclaimed overtaking maneuvres were the ones that were also rigorously defended. So apparently it is what we want to see, yet people still condemn them.

    The official rules however state that you may change your driving line once to defend, which Schumacher does in the above video.

    So yay to Schumacher for defending rigorously, and a lot of yay to Mika for trying to overtake the way he did, and eventually succeeding in a brilliant manner.

    1. Hear, hear.

    2. For me, things can get a bit rougher out there on the track.

      If drivers are allowed to swerve into each other at 200mph – and, as we’ve seen, are increasingly willing to do so – then how long will it be before we’re pulling burning cars and mangled corpses out of grandstands?

      1. Although F1 has seen much loss of life, I don’t remember any were because of condemnable drivng tactics. Not even during the Schumacher years were there any serious incident injuring anyone because of this. F1 drivers are F1 drivers for a reason and part of that is they can fight aggressively, make the odd dangerous move and anticipate others. So even though drivers like DC, Trulli, etc have come out swearing at such dangerous moves no one is hurt cause they are concentrating full on. But the occasional gamesmanship adds character and if someone goes really off the line its the FIA who need to make an example by handing out a penalty.

      2. r u joking, tell you what, why don’t we surround the cars in a bumper car style rubber ring & let them drive at low speeds round a single oval with lots of run off at a top speed of 30mph. would that suit you ? tell you what, also make sure they wear a hi vis jacket & have done a risk assement prior to every move they make. get real. burning cars in grandstands ! have you ever been to a race & noticed the MOTORSPORT IS DANGEROUS writing on the ticket ? did you think they put that there for “the others” and not you ! go and watch netball at the local council fun day & take your hard hat for your thrills & by the way, leave F1 alone, its obviously not for you sweet pea.

        1. Myles Woerner
          1st January 2010, 20:15

          Wayne, you’re talking to the founder of F1fanatic. Of course Keith has been to an F1 race. Show some respect. Also, please improve you’re grammar and spelling. You sound like an 8 year old.

          1. Well said Myles. Wayne, dude… not cool.

        2. Wayne, you started off with good points in this thread but you’re losing the plot now.

        3. I really wet myself laughing… good ‘un mate!

    3. bernification
      3rd January 2010, 23:11

      Well Vincent, when someone makes wheel contact at 200 mph and a car somersaults into the crowd, you’ll get your entertainment.

      Until then, isn’t celebrity big brother on.

      1. @bernification
        Ah you’re missing the point here…

        Facts:
        – Most people didn’t write Senna off, when he said that he would crash into Prost, to the world’s press.

        – Most didn’t cry their heart out for Prost when Senna rammed into him, first corner of the first lap. There was really no excuse for that.

        Also, i think Vincent was pointing out to the primeval streak of that animalistic part of our dna, where people gathered in their hundreds and thousands to watch gladiators slug it out… or something of that sort.

        Vincent’s not asking for some fried drivers or/ and viewers, he was just stating that F1 is a dangerous sport and has been since its inception. Touring car drivers also make quite some body contact and boy do they have some crashing and banging going on. You don’t see much made out of that, now do you? Also, a bucket-load of fans go watch touring cars acing action, don’t they?

  16. I completely disagree with Nico and Keith.

    Senna pulled off moves which were just as bad as Schumacher’s. The only thing he didn’t do was park his car to get flags out. Apart from that, Senna could be an even worse menace to drivers than Schumacher could. In fact, it’s probably where Schumacher learned his trade from, if we’re going to start blaming people for influencing others. I fir one am suck of the hypocrisy over Senna; it seems that Schumacher’s biggest crimes were to dominate for two seasons in a five-season winning streak and not to die in the attempt, because that’s pretty much most if the difference between the pair.

    Personally I think the whole theory is rubbish, and Nico’s examples poor: two of them were racing incidents whilst a third involved a rookie – they hardly compare to Schumacher’s ruthlessness.

    I think Nico is just trying to play mind games on Webber and Hamilton, whom he expects to challenge next year, and he must have known Schumacher’s return was a possibility – the rumours were already flying.

    1. Where do you draw the line though? According to the rules braking 50m early for a corner is not outlawed, but Ralf’s brake test for Villeneuve at Melbourne killed a Marshall.

      I think if you look at the Spa video it’s the last minute weaving that is the complaint here, not the one move rule.

      Yes it’s a dangerous sport but I personally don’t like to see cars flying into crowds and Marshalls, and with open wheelers that is what can and probably will happen if drivers do not speak out a bit.

      1. Sadly, the line can only be found through trial and error and sometimes people get hurt or killed in that process. The only way to eliminate it at all would be to completely neuter the racing.

        Thankfully we seem to have it mostly figured out for today’s F1. It doesn’t help when stewards give out penalties for nonsense situations and don’t punish clear transgressions, though.

        And I highly doubt drivers speaking out in Rosberg’s manner will help, particularly when his argument is so weak. If there was a single united front then perhaps so, but again all we’d end up with is the same situation we have now or an F1 with almost no action.

      2. So tell us John why you did not present your ‘evidence’ to the Victorian Coroners Inquiry?You surely have all the telemetry and recorded interviews with the drivers after the race to substantiate your libelous slur.Looking forward to a call from Ralfs legal reps? Be carefull what you write- we live in a litigous world.

    2. I’m sorry but you simply can’t compare Senna and Schumacher in any way. In the case of Senna blatantly ramming Prost off the track at the start of Suzuka 1990, it was a case of sticking to one’s principles.
      After the controversy of 1989, Senna was prepared to do anything in 1990 and he openly said it in all press conferences. When they refused to have the pole position on the cleaner racing line, Senna said he would crash into Prost if Prost made a better start. And that’s exactly what he did. He never did anything similar ever again. Nor did Prost.

      In Schumacher case, he did some quite revolting manoeuvres several times in a pathetic attempt to get away with mistakes he made all by himself. Some examples:
      – Repeatedly going against technical regulations in ’94 and ’95 (fuel rigs, minimum weight) costing him a huge amount of disqualifications
      – Went off track by himself at Adelaide ’94 and rammed Hill
      – Left the door open for Villeneuve in Jerez ’97 and at the last second, tried to damage his car
      – Probably the worst, his Monaco ’96 stunt in qualifying when he saw his last lap wasn’t quite good enough.

      1. “the case of Senna blatantly ramming Prost off the track at the start of Suzuka 1990, it was a case of sticking to one’s principles.”

        Lol, ramming a fellow driver off the track at 160mph in cars which safety wise amounted to high speed bathtubs, some principles! Schumacher’s moves on Hill and Villeneuve were grossly unsporting but harmless in comparison to what Senna did to Prost in 1990. In fact all the examples you give for Schumacher’s unsporting acts are the ones that posed little danger to other drivers.

        1. So right!@!@! But, Senna was martyred, not just killed, at Imola. None of his dangerous self-serving moves will ever be held against him. HIs aggression will forever be dismissed as mere playfulness. Go get’em, Schumi. Without this flamboyance and risk, it’s not racing, just high speed driving. Yawn.

      2. Sticking to someone’s principles doesn’t always make what they’ve done right. What Senna did was wrong and people need to accept it. At least Schumacher never rammed anyone off. He may have come close to pushing drivers wide, but he didn’t blatantly ram people from behind.

      3. José Baudaier
        31st December 2009, 22:03

        Senna also did it for revenge. In ’89 Prost took him out of the track, but he managed to come back and after the race he was disqualified by a technicality while Prost had no punishment. ’90 was the pay back.

        One can’t say revenge is right, but also can’t say that it doesn’t have any influence. A pure and simple comparison of Suzuka ’90 and Schumacher’s ’94 and ’97 can only be considered limited.

        1. I’m not saying Suzuka 1990 was right but the actions were motivated by real reasons and also publically premeditated. Something I can respect, even though it might be dangerous.

          Schumacher’s actions were, for the most part, last minute, desperate lunges following driving errors. In my mind, showing such desperate disregard for sportsmanship, in what used to be the highest form of motorsport, is repulsive, a far worse offense than putting 1 other driver’s safety at risk by punting him into one of the largest gravel traps around the suzuka circuit.

      4. – Probably the worst, his Monaco ‘96 stunt in qualifying when he saw his last lap wasn’t quite good enough.

        I assume you meant ’06.

    3. Great stuff. I’ve always found it amazing people criticise Schumacher for ramming people, while they conveniently forget Senna did the same, and in a far more dangerous manner.

  17. it seems that Schumacher’s biggest crimes were to dominate for two seasons in a five-season winning streak and not to die in the attempt

    Sad, but seemingly true.

  18. im bored of this now XD

    1. same here.

        1. Fourthed :)

  19. I am with Icthyes on this . Rosberg had promoted himself to be a driver that he in reality could’nt be in his dreams.
    Nobody else remember Senna crashing into the wall at the start finish line in France not only to win pole by not taking the last corner but also forcing a doubble yellow flag to stop anyone beating his time.
    I need to keep reminding myself that before Schumacher the sport was perfect and only gentelmen raced.

    1. schumacher followed senna’s way of driving, but couldn’t get away with it some of the times. Now it is a little more difficult to do the so called dangerous driving, and not get a penalty. But sometimes it does happen. Thanks for letting them go for it once in a while, and not compromise the title fight, the way the stewards did with montoya at indy in 2003.

  20. It´s strange how this clip which has been shown so many millions of times, still can amaze people and accuse Schumacher of shutting the door.

    The distance between his car and the grass is the same before Mika tries to overtake, as after he tried. The thing that confuses people, is that the view of the camera from Mika´s car changes, as he moves from being behind Schumachers car to try and go right on him

    Go ahead and accuse me of being a Schumacher fan, I am not, but I am just perplexed that the author fails to mention the fact, that several years later, mika Hakkinen has openly said that he knew there was not enough space for him to pass Schumacher, still Schumacher is blamed for staying in the racing line.

  21. Keith, great article!

    Completely hits it on the head for me as to what my problems with schumacher was/is.

    He’s one of those guys I love to hate, in spite of that the fact I’m the first to acknowledge he’s a seriously talented driver.

    But to me there’s a certain responsibility that comes with being so good, a responsibility to do your talking with your skill behind the wheel and not cheat/pull dangerous moves at 200mph+

    I lost all respect for him because of it.

    Alonso is in the same boat, he’s one of the most complete drivers in the sport in the moment, he can wring the neck of a mediocre car and launch it further up the points than it deserves to be!

    But I seen a schu-esque side to his mentality when he moved to McLaren, the whole need to be the top dog in the team. You are top dog based on your performance in the car, nothing more!

    If any of the schu fanbois/gloryhunters think I’m biased against Ferrari (I’ll admit my team is McLaren, always was and always will be), I like lots of drivers, not just those driving for McLaren. I was a huge fan of Alonso pre-mclaren, and I love to see Vettel, Webber, Rosberg and other drivers do well, tho not at the expense of Lewis obviously!

    But first and foremost I want to see good racing, not cheating!

  22. Most competetive drivers of the new era will push the limits of bad behaviour on the track. There used to be a limit to what you could do before F1 bacame so much safer at the beginning of the eighties with carbon tubes.
    The first driver to take advantage of the new circumstances then was Senna and since he was not punished for it by the FIA this sort of driving was more or less accepted. Schumacher has had some high profile cases of bad driving which I think is the result of reflex actions rather than calculated moves.
    Alain Prost is often overlooked as being a truly great driver, but was he not the greatest? He won all his races and Chapionships against the best competitors and team mates and never compromised his dignity by unfair driving.

  23. Nico is just a spoiled brat repeating Daddy’s views :-(

    We all saw his Keke’s comments on the La Rascasse 2006 …. He was so unprofessional in his commentary :-(

  24. Spa ’00 was not as dangerous as Hill’s triple weave at Canada ’98.

    1. Thats probably true, but then again Hill wouldn’t have done it to anyone else.

      1. That doesn’t make it ok.

  25. I think Schumi is a hard one. But not more than many others (Senna, Prost did similar moves in 88-90 period).
    He’s not the most correct of hystory, but I don’t think he set a bad standard.

  26. I know that the safety of others in the sport (marshals, spectators, the drivers, and the mechanics) is the most important aspect of the sport. But I think that a little aggressive driving is not bad, what Schumacher has done in the past is not that bad. That video at the top shows that when Schumacher blocked Mika, that was just pure racing, and that is what F1 should be all about: pure racing. I’m sure Michael will not endanger the lives of others.

  27. Want to stop dangerous on track moves by your fellow drivers? Senna taught us that as well: Meet them in pit lane after the race and punch their lights out! I assure you they will remember the color of your car in their mirrors at the next race.

    Personally I see nothing wrong with defending a position regardless of car performance discounting of course lapped cars, which is why they have blue flags. If you want to advance a place you have to take it, it shouldn’t be given.

  28. Even knowing that i´ve been a Shumacher fan, i have to agree that sometimes he doesn´t think so much on the other drivers.
    Rosberg waited his chance to prove himself in a better car and now that he finaly got it, all his triumph is being spoiled by Shumacher return.
    Do some guys remember to post a comment here saying how will the Button-Hamilton and Massa-Alonso respect each other inside the team!
    Well, i think Mercedes has much more to do in the garage now to keep both drivers happy!
    I think Shumacher will not be in perfect condition to drive in F1 and he´ll see his face after 3-4 races.

  29. I’d say this is Rosberg trying to stir things up a little. As a kart racer myself, that sort of move seems fair. Schumacher was defending his position by using all of the track. It might have been dangerous, but that was in part Hakkinen’s doing for staying so committed.

    All Hakkinen had to do was bide his time and choose another moment to strike.

    Rosberg is too much of a moaner. Shut up and let your driving do the talking.

  30. I think the Marshalls are very strict at manoevres like that nowadays – as long as it’s not a Ferrari or Schumacher who does it.. It’s a dangerous sport anyway and moves like that one Schumey did to hakkinen are unnecessary. If you’r beaten, you’re beaten, don’t start acting like a madman. Senna once admitted to pushing Prost of the track but that was because of the politics in F1. I think Hamilton is quite a dangerous driver as well. But there’s a difference between taking huge risks and plainly cheating. Everyone driving an F1 race puts his life at risk, so at least some rules are necessary to prevent the kind of actions Schumacher did there. This is however the most brilliant pass I’ve ever see in F1 (the lap after the controversial move), so I’m actually quite gratefull he did it.

  31. If unacceptable behaviour is not dealt with by the relevant authorities in any walk of life it is a signal to others of what they too can get away with.

    We can debate which driver was the first to make such moves on rivals but if they had been handed a meaningful punishment at the time there probably wouldn’t have been as many incidents as there has been.

    I think the FIA should clearly write down the rules defining as well as possible what is not acceptable and say it doesn’t matter what precedents have already been set in the future if you do this you will be punished.

    I wouldn’t like to have the situation where it what was okay at one race is suddenly frowned upon at the next without any announcement.

  32. One comment above being missed (LewisC) is that racing drivers do not have time to think at the speeds they race at! Anyone who has sat next to a professional is always amazed at how MUCH time they make for themselves and thus how easy it looks, indeed it is JY Stewart I think who once said he breaks a corner down into a series of slow moves!

  33. Common Guys this guy(NICO) is getting tense.It is obvious someone gets tensed , nervous when they say u r the rising star and then the real star comes alongside u.He shud just shut up and drive and prove he is onpar with schumi which I suppose will not happen..

    Can u guys mention a real racing driver who will just let pass a faster car without a defense.May be KOVI who always let pass his team mate and got a medal “GREAT SPORTMANSHIP” nothing else..

    and for keith i beg u not to give these kind of stuff over and over again like FIA biased to ferrari and Schumi a conterversial driver.I suppose from next year it will be like FIA biased to Mercedes because Schumi is in it.

    We are all excited abt next year where we will be seeing four WDC competing each other.Let us all enjoy that instead of focussing on something that happened a decade back.

  34. I still get a tingle watching that move by Mika. Absolutely brilliant!

    As for Schumacher, lets hope Todt has the guts to ensure the rules are administered equally and justly to all with no exceptions…

  35. Just wondering – Autosport, the Guardian and forumula1.com have all reported that Michael Schumacher is on a three year deal – why are people here saying it’s one?

    1. Also Schumi said it :)

  36. Mika was brilliant, that pass will be history in F1 books.

  37. You can look at it in a few ways… Mika was still behind him, he just went to the middle so he can’t pass.. when the other car is next to the other, it’s a whole different story… still dangerous tough :)

    1. Yes, Michael’s move was totally ok to me…
      Alonso used a similar one in Brazil 2007. You have to expect the other driver to not let you simply take all that draft to slingshot past…

  38. I want to see PASSING in F!…. not blocking.

  39. I have to say, I’d say Senna was worse than Schumacher. I’d also say I see little wrong with what Schumacher did in moving across people, as long as it wasn’t in a braking zone. Didn’t really have much of a problem with thew Monaco trick either.

    Perhaps I share his “win whatever the cost” mentality. No, I definitely do.

  40. Since when can Schumacher ever dictate the standards of driving? Or Senna, Prost, whoever? The standards of driving are set by the FIA, and it seems to me that the FIA is the party that is lacking when it comes to Schumacher, at least. He got away with several dodgy moves that would have seen an agressive driver like Hamilton (for example) nearly kicked from the sport. Or should I say a McLaren driver.

    The FIA, throughout Schumacher’s most successful years and under Mosley, was to blame for protecting certain teams or drivers (Schumacher, Alonso, Renault, Ferrari, Bridgestone imo) while persecuting others blatantly (Honda, McLaren, Montoya, Michelin imo). Schumacher himself could not influence the driving morality of any young hotshoe if the governing body didn’t allow that morality to perpetuate.

    The buck stops at the top, and there’s only two blokes running things, effectively. So, who to blame?

    I hope Jean Todt brings some much-needed stability in both rules and stewarding. All driver behaviour will be altered accordingly, in my opinion.

    1. Great post ! I wish I shared your optimism that Le Toad will be the one to take the broom to several of the messes that are currently in F1…

    2. @ Toby Bushby
      I presume that you’re talking about the same McLaren who were spared the blushes by the FIA to use parts developed using Ferrari tech in their ’08 season. Yes, they were not allowed to develop them any further, but they were allowed to run the cars with those parts. If you’d bring the $100 million, then all i’ll have to say is that teams spend millions for gaining that sliver of a second… here they had a formula for a winning car.

      Secondly, Lewis was spared blushes by the FIA when he lied to the FIA about not slowing down to let Trulli past and the team McLaren seconded that. I remember that McLaren were let off lightly for that. Is McLaren the team in red colours, with an emblazoned prancing horse? I didn’t think so and yet they were let off by the FIA…

      As someone said so famously for Lewis, “Engage brain before opening mouth!”

  41. Happy New Year to all F1 fans!

    This man’s return is only goog for his pocket and Bernie’s… About competition, fair play, good relations between the drivers like we saw this year (because Alonso was doen and didn’t make many waves) – next year, forget it – this guys is like that – the example you show of Niko’s alert is the firt of so many time he did go too far… we saw he could go because nobody punished hiom, so he continue – and he’s going to continue nest season, I have no doubt!… To bad… we so many bad things happening to F1… this is another, in my point of view….

  42. why did massa retire ?

  43. Split speed decisions are easy to critise after the event. Schumacher, Prost, Senna, Mansell, Piquet all did similar things, thats F1, it is dangerous. The one guy that did not moan is Mika himself so who are we to judge?

  44. Look, enough, F1 is dangerous, is exciting & thats why we watch it. As much as some hated Schuey & loved it when he lost his desire to win at all costs was always immense & no other driver could cope. In this crazy crazy PC world we live in its bad to want to win. Shove the nanny state up your **** & start getting some ruthlessness back in the world.

    Its a mans sport, its not for girls & the whole world has gone far too soft. 69 days to the season starts & i can’t wait, lets hope it lives up to what it promises.

    1. This comment gets the thumbs up from me.

      1. Thanks David, the revolution will be ours !

    2. On the contrary, I think it’d be great to have a woman in F1 again, it’s long overdue. Don’t really see how it’s relevant to this, though.

      1. Keith, after reading most of your comments on here i’m beginning to wonder if you have a love & passion for F1 or your a fully paid up member of the PC brigade. Women in F1…why ? the fact is their no good, end of. Overtaking, why is it getting to you that “RACING” drivers are racing ? like i sad earlier, i think you need to find a sport more suitable for yourself, like green bowls, far less danger & even OAP’s can play. When i started watching F1 the most appealing aspect of it was the sheer danger, man against machine, balls out moves, one misssion, people driven to win, Giles Villeneuve in Portugal, Mansell at Mexico, Senna at Suzuka, the list goes on, are your favourite races the processional sunday strolls around a middle eastern deserted desert. i think so. Get real or get out of F1, you’ve lost the whole point of what “racing” is. Its dangerous, is says so on the ticket. shocking, shocking commenys from a so called “F1 Fan”

        1. If a person’s a good enough driver to be in F1 it doesn’t matter what gender they are. And it’s not even slightly relevant to an article about Michael Schumacher.

        2. Am I and all the other females on this site allowed to watch it then? Or is it just cars women are banned from?:S
          I don’t find it PC, I just think saying that I think the attitude of ‘women shoulod stay away from the cars’ just locks out potential talent.

          1. If a woman driver was capable of being as competitive in a Formula One car as any of the current F1 drivers she would be in the seat, it would be a marketing dream. The fact is there are none so thats why no women drive in F1. FACT. (plus they can’t get the lipstick applied just so with a crash helmet on)

          2. Wayne, you threatened by women much? The reason there are no women drivers in F1 is that for generations women were not made welcome in motorsports, so they had no chance to make their place in it. I know a few women who can kick any guy’s ass behind the wheel. Why don’t crawl back under the dark rock you came from and stay there. Men like you don’t deserve to be called men.

          3. Hey, hey, hey Wayne! I liked your first post about the attitudes towards wanting to win, but don’t go too far! Tone it down :)

          4. ‘Women will never be Grand Prix drivers because they’ve got no balls”-Denny Hulme 1968. Nothing more needs to be said!

          5. Although her ability on non-ovals is questionable, I’ll bet that Danica Patrick is much better than some of the “men” we’ve had driving, such as Yoong, Deletraz, Rosset etc etc etc.

            Anyway, back on topic, I think that Schumacher and Senna were as “bad as each other”, but Schumacher suffers from the anti-Ferrari backlash following the seemingly protective FIA attitude towards them in the early 00’s

          6. @W154 You’re so right, anything said in 1968 must be right – I don’t know why anyone’s bothered to come up with anything new since then.

  45. F1 drivers should be some of the bravest people on the planet.

    I’m sick of moaning drivers like Rosberg and Kubica complaining that Hamilton or Webber are driving dangerously because they defend their position or make a lunge overtaking move. This is what racing is and this is what I personally want to watch, not sissys complaining and people letting eachother through cleanly

    1. Good man Tommy, there are people on here who plainly just do not get the point of what “RACING” is. Its really shocking & to be honest quite sad really. “F1 Fanatic !” Fanatical about what exactly ? Health & Safety ?????

    2. In F1, we do need health and safety to prevent any more driver deaths. But thank you Tommy and Wayne for raising the point, the whingers and excuse makers need to stop and let the best drivers RACE! :)

      1. I think they should accept death as a risk of competing. If they don’t like it they can go race in giant bubbles.

  46. Myles Woerner
    1st January 2010, 20:39

    Wayne, it is clear that you have never stepped in a race car, because if you had, you would not be voicing these opinions. I agree-racing is racing, and is inherently dangerous. But to fanatically push for more danger in F1 by way of belligerent driving tactics shows complete immaturity and general ignorance of the nature of the sport. Perhaps you are simply feeling some faux nostalgia for the days when drivers died in numbers and lives were shattered. But I get it-you see yourself as a purist, and can’t stand what you see as heinous crimes to the heart of the sport in terms of safety regulations and procedures. But please, don’t voice your ridiculous opinions from your cozy little couch without thinking about real world implications. Also, work on your spelling and grammar. I have trouble taking you seriously when you write “their” instead of “they’re.”

    1. I second that opinion

      1. And I third it.

  47. Schumi will drive circles around all of them. There is no perfect world champion. In one way or another, each world champion has an issue in somebodys eyes.

    I dont agree with some of schumi tactics but the reality is, world champion drivers, have the 1% (i dont give a fu*k) in them that makes them a champion. When thay starting thinking to much it all falls to pieces. Button nearly lost it because he was thinking to much. And yes i dont rate him as a world champion driver, he second half of the season was useless. I have no doubt, if Lewis or Schumi was driving the brawn the title would have be done a lot a earlier. These guys can put wheely bins on pole with raw speed alone.

    Schumi, Alonso, Hamilton, Senna, Kimi there all of the same mould. The will do what ever it takes to win a title. If it means run somebody off the road they will. Schumi is the bench mark because he is the best, but lewis, alonso, senna are not saints yet they i never spoken badly of.

  48. I’m with Ichthyes on tracing back poor driving standards to Senna. I’m old enough to have watched Senna through his career and the guy was a psychopath, pure and simple. This isn’t speaking ill of the dead, it’s a fact that bears repeating.

    Some of my favourite drivers over the years – no, all of them – have been proper sportsmen. I remember Hill taking Schumacher to task after Spa ’94 and then remember with enormous pleasure Schumacher some years later in Canada (’98?) complaining that Hill had tried to kill him.

    Like Senna, Schumacher has a psychopathic urge to win at all costs and this is neither good for the sport or for its fans and competitors. We all remember the dramas of 2008 and 2009 but we need only to look back over the decade to detect the stench of Schumacher’s driving misdemeanours. Lie-gate was partly to do with driving standards but the dramas have really been off-track.

    With Schumacher about the controversies were always about the driving. Not all of it, no, but most of it. I’m not pleased about Schumacher’s return, I don’t care whether he’s good or not and I will welcome his departure after a few races or the end of the season.

    Phil C rightly points out that Kimi, Lewis and Fernando aren’t saints, and I’ll add Webber to that list too, but they are robust, not stupid. They don’t throw their toys out of the cockpit if someone tries to get by and the certainly aren’t engineered to do all their passing in pitlane because they can’t pull off a clean pass on the track.

    And without Ferrari’s Mosley-inspired immunity, I don’t think Schumacher would be seven-time world champion. How he got away with 1994 in a Benetton is anyone’s guess.

    But, before you sharpen your swords, let me say this – he is an extraordinary driver who doesn’t need to cheat or endanger others to win and to win well. Why he sullied his career with such awful choices remains a mystery to me. Same goes for Senna, too.

  49. Rosberg needs to grow some balls. I’ll admit, I consider Nico to be a very consistant, mature, and fast racer who seems to be living in the shadows of mediocre drivers in good cars *cough*Button*cough*. However, this is the pinacle of motorsport, not “Driving Miss Daisy”. If Nico wants to be a champion, he needs to start making risks, start putting himself in the spotlight. Schumacher was the expert at this, and still is. He knows how to minipulate others mentally, that’s his most dangerous side. Not what he does on the track… may 2010 prove this.

  50. Interesting debate. Totally agree with the great comment that Schumacher is too good to need to do these moves, and we all wait with baited breath to see whether the old “bad boy” will re-emerge in 2010. the above video proves that a great champion doesn’t have to resort to dirty driving. Mika answers Schumi with class, and makes it look easy. Power to him. Someone here said you need to be ruthless to be a champion. Mika disproves this.

    As did Nico’s dad Keke, one of the greatest, and biggest-balled racers ever, and perhaps THE most underrated of F1 drivers. Everyone goes on about Senna’s great first lap at Donington in 1993. What about Keke’s at Monaco 10 years earlier? The only driver on slicks on a damp track…5th on the grid in a “Cossie” driven car, when all around are turbo driven. P2 at turn 1, leading at the end of the lap. He made that slickshod Williams dance on the wet surface, around the most unforgiving track in the world. a great victory. The only time he resorted to “dirty driving” was to block Senna’s lotus at Brands, to allow his team mate Mansell through to victory!

    There’s a long list of “clean” champions – to name but a few: Hakkinen; Kimi; Mansell; Alonso; Fangio; Jim Clark…and Stirling Moss of course – a true champion in all but numbers. His view is that safety measures have ruined driving ethics,and made “dirty driving” possible, because to have done such things in his era would have been lethal. Or as another great, Mario Andretti put it in response to Senna’s reprehensible act of revenge on Prost at Suzuka: Senna’s excuse was initially “Prost left a gap…” Mario said: “If there hadn’t been a gravel trap, there wouldn’t have been a gap…”

    1. There’s a long list of “clean” champions – to name but a few: Hakkinen; Kimi; Mansell

      Didn’t Mansell brake-test Senna at Adelaide in his championship-winning year?

      It’s funny how standards changed Keke Rosberg was furious at Mansell for defending his position at Dallas in ’84. By modern standards there’s nothing to fault what Mansell did. I wonder if other people were as bothered by it as Rosberg was back then?

      1. Didn’t Mansell brake-test Senna at Adelaide in his championship-winning year?

        He did, and they both crashed out of the race as a result.

        Mansell also had a large shunt with Senna at Estoril in 1989, making an extremely optimistic move after ignoring failing to spot a black flag for reversing in the pitlane – conveniently helping Mansell’s soon to be Ferrari team mate Alain Prost to win the race.

  51. I think we can add Damon Hill, Jenson Button and Jacques Villeneuve to clean champions. I think we can add Jacques…can’t we?

    1. Damon Hill rammed off Schumacher twice in 1995 for revenge (Silverstone may have been accidental, but Monza was deliberate). Hill’s triple weave at Canada 1998 has also been mentioned i this thread. The other two I’ll agree with unless somebody reminds me of anything they’ve done…

  52. You regulars here know, when it comes to articles or Forum posts concerning Mssr. Schumacher, I avoid them like the plague. But I have to get in on this.

    Schumacher isn’t the only driver to ever use dirty tactics, nor is he the only driver/team to cheat. However, most other drivers drove dirty ocassionally. Schumacher seemed to make a career out of it. That’s my only complaint with him. Other than that, he was a d@mn good driver.

    Oh, I agree with those who say the whiners should sit down and shut up. Drivers should be allowed to defend their positions, and when letting an overtaking driver through becomes the rule, that’s when I quit Formula 1. However– manouevering an already wrecked car back across the track to block a competitor is not in any way to be compared with defending one’s position during an attempted overtake. (Schumacher, Adelaide, ’94)

    So, regardless which side of the discussion you’re on, let’s not confuse legitimate dicing with trying to wreck or run the other guy off the track.

    As to women drivers in racing, I say fine thing. If they have the pace, give them the seat. And to all those commenting that women just don’t have balls–why would you want them to? ;-)

    @Wayne–obviously you were taken from the teat far too early. I can recommend a good therapist, if you like. You are lucky I’m not a moderator here, cause I’d have banned you way back. Good that Keith is more forgiving than I.

    And what exactly, Wayne, is your area of expertise in racing? Driver? Team owner? Race engineer? And you talk of races 20 years ago. Do you actually know anything of them, or only what you’ve read or heard from others?

    Many folks on Keith’s site do have personal experience in racing, or have actually been going to races for 20 or more years. You might want to read closely, it isn’t hard to suss out who they are, you might learn something.

  53. All this talk about recent ‘dangerous’ driving as if it’s a new phenomenon! Anyone else here old enough to remember Willy Mairesse?
    By the way, Wayne, with opinions like yours, your surname has to be ‘Kerr’!

  54. JohnsonsTwin
    4th January 2010, 9:57

    The manouvre goes to show the class of Hakkinen. Yes he had some off kilter moments, but how many times did this guy pull off stunning lap times that had the Schumi super team reeling?
    Some cynics would say he had the car, but I remember Schumi having the best car for each of his 7 championships, Benneton years arguably granted. He had Ross Brawn though….

  55. A lot of talk espressing hope that Todt will be even-handed.

    He needs to be. The cruel and stupid kick in the balls of motor racing that was the penalty to Lewis at Spa 2 years ago, robbing him of a great win, was, as Lauda said “the worst decision I have ever seen in Formula One.” Who gains? Ferrari, with Massa’s promotion.

    Last year at the same circuit, Kimi sails past Fisichella at the end of a straight that began with Kimi driving WAY off track at La Source, to gain the advantage of momentum on his rival.

    Did HE get a penalty, or even an investigation for “gaining advantage by driving off the circuit” which robbed Lewis the year before?

    No! He won…in a Ferrari!

    Of course one could argue he’d have taken the lead anyway sooner or later, as the Force India was slower on the straight, but then Kimi crashed out a year earlier , so Lewis’s apparent sin wouldn’t have changed the result either.

    And regarding Mclaren’s fine, the guy at Ferrari who supposedly “supplied” the info to Mclaren(was it Rob Smedley? memory not so good this AM!) said “No way was it one way.”

    But Ferrari escaped punishmnent.

    So was THIS a case of personal vindictiveness on Mosley’s part?

    One thing is for sure, even-handedness on Todt’s part is a must for the future integrity of the…ahem..”sport” of F1.

    1. Purple Skyline
      9th February 2010, 1:50

      Very well said Tim.

      F1’s biggest scandal of all has been the biased interference from the FIA whilst presided over by a megalomaniac.

      This is not a defence of Briatore (for instance) but Mosley’s power hungry dictatorial stance was left unchallenged for far, far too long.

      Apart from Mosley himself, the biggest benefactors BY FAR have been Ferrari and a certain driver who happened to arrive at the right time in order to gain from such imbalance.

      I am still very concerned that Jean Todt, with his well known love of all things Ferrari – and incidentally; Schumacher: will dance to the tune of those who still hold the strings…

  56. Purple Skyline
    9th February 2010, 1:37

    What a very well presented and candid view from a journalist who is not over-awed by the Schumacher hype – which many other journalists bow down to with their sycophantic hero-worship.

    It is very refreshing to find that there is someone prepared to stick his neck out, from the often cowardly pack of grovellers who simply add to the spin, presumably because it is easier to go with the general momentum to earn one’s crust; rather than rock the boat with something others prefer to shy away from.

    Well done.

    Forgive me for not elaborating; I say this from a knowledgeable perspective.

  57. BeyondThePale
    14th April 2010, 22:00

    Prost was truly the greatest ever

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