Lewis Hamilton doesn’t want Michael Schumacher’s “tainted” legacy

Hamilton says he 'would like to be remembered in the best way'

Hamilton says he 'would like to be remembered in the best way'

Michael Schumacher’s grilling at the hands of the media over the 2006 Rascasse controversy provoked many comments on F1 Fanatic yesterday.

Several of them drew comparisons between Schumacher’s track record and those of other drivers like Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton. Today Hamilton said he wouldn’t want to be remembered in the same way Schumacher is:

To be potentially tainted by something like that would be really devastating for me. That is definitely something I don’t want to be remembered for.
Lewis Hamilton

Hamilton has, of course, had plenty of brushes with controversy of his own – most infamously in the Australian Grand Prix last year, where he apologised after lying to the stewards over an incident with Jarno Trulli during the race.

Hamilton told Reuters he wanted to be remembered for his race craft:

I am not really bothered if I am remembered or not. But clearly I am going to be remembered. I am part of the sport, I’m part of its history, I am a world champion.

I think as I am going to be anyway, I would like to be remembered in the best way and the best light. I want to be remembered as a fair driver as a clean driver and one that always drove with my heart and battled through thick and thin to score the points and the championships I will hopefully earn by then.
Lewis Hamilton

You can read the quotes in full on Reuters. Hamilton added that racing against Schumacher “doesn’t do anything for me whatsoever” whereas having the chance to race against his hero Ayrton Senna would have been “special”.

It’s fascinating to hear Hamilton speak this frankly about his own reputation and have a bit of a dig at another driver – especially someone with Schumacher’s record of success.

Do you agree with Hamilton’s assessment of Schumacher’s reputation – and his own? Have your say in the comments.

Michael Schumacher still refuses to explain 2006 Rascasse controversy

Image (C) www.mclaren.com

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203 comments on Lewis Hamilton doesn’t want Michael Schumacher’s “tainted” legacy

  1. FelipeBabyStayCool said on 13th May 2010, 17:51

    I worship Ayrton Senna as the all-time best pilot, but he also had his rash moments and was heavily criticized in his time, and hated too. The price of glory, I guess.

  2. rampante said on 13th May 2010, 18:02

    Keith, I hope your site sponsors pay you by the comment. Keep up the Schmacher and Hamilton stories and yours will be nearly the biggest boat at Monaco. Light the touch paper and stand well back…….

  3. S Hughes said on 13th May 2010, 18:11

    This article is just an invitation to Hamilton-haters. Way to go!

    • sumedh said on 13th May 2010, 18:24

      You are right.

      The previous article was an invitation to all Schumi-haters :)

      Perhaps, Keith is keeping all haters happy in reverse alphabetical order.

      First Michael, then Lewis. Buck up Kimi and Jenson haters, you are next ;-) ;-)

      • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 13th May 2010, 18:38

        I don’t think you could have referred to either Hamilton’s quote today or Schumacher’s quote yesterday without it being seen by some as a desire to provoke anger. There’s just too much bad feeling about both drivers from some quarters.

      • S Hughes said on 13th May 2010, 19:53

        No, you’ll find Button has an invisible force field protecting him from negative articles in the British media.

        • HG said on 14th May 2010, 1:02

          give it time, give it time. They love nothing more than building someone up, so they can tear them down.

        • BasCB said on 14th May 2010, 8:26

          That is not really true. They just are not negative of ungenlemenlike behaviour but have critique of him being as good a driver as Lewis and others.

    • Mark Hitchcock said on 14th May 2010, 1:03

      Or just an invitation for you to make another ridiculous statement in his defence.

      • ididnt said on 14th May 2010, 9:57

        I agree – Hamilton only giving us another reason to remember him as a cheesy self-obsessed idiot. Why he always has to justify himself as racing with his ‘heart’ is beyond me.

  4. Lewis has a looooong career ahead of him. you can bet the first time he is embroiled in any kind of on track ethical question this statement will rise up to haunt him. And deservedly so.

    I think Lewis would sell his soul today to have seven crowns on his mantle. Hell, I would too!

  5. Omar Roncal said on 13th May 2010, 18:20

    Well, it’s a shame that Hamilton doesn’t want to be remembered as a rule-breaker, when rulers so often BREAK rules over the rest of the paddock just to have Hamilton on top places. He’s an excellent driver, but with incidents like the Nurburgring towing years ago, or the other day going nuts in the pitlane , and the stewards investigated that “after the race”, or pushing Webber out of the road, well Lewis, that’s the “tainted” image you don’t want to admit as plenty yours. (PS: Ups I first commented this in another post)

    • LondonRacer said on 14th May 2010, 10:31

      he didn’t push Webber (who slammed into Lewis’ rear in Australia for no apparent reason (he’s just not skilled enough) – Lewis had Vettel on the left so had nowhere to go…

      Webber can’t get blame others when he can’t outbreak better racing drivers… he has a very good car, that’s it.

      • Brake Bias said on 15th May 2010, 1:32

        Go back and read what Webber had to say on that incident and then rethink your statement about not being skilled enough.

        He has a damn site more skill than either you or I.

  6. soulmonkey said on 13th May 2010, 18:22

    It is sad that this article is purely for commentary. Keith, you could have let this one go. We get enough negative Hamilton opinion expressed to allow this one to slip.. I am sure Hamilton did not mean to belittle Schumi with is comments. But like planetf1, F1F fans seems to relish the opportunity to just express their opinions on Hamilton. (just adding to the 150 count)…

    • BasCB said on 14th May 2010, 8:31

      What is negative in it for Hamilton. Good for him not to want to have a tainted image. I am glad he cares (something i am not sure Schumi cares about). It is up to him to try to behave like it as well.

      He has to put down his admiration to Schumi. First his experience with im on track was not as thrilling as expected as Schumi was not having his day. He never had that experience with Senna!
      Next to that, every possibility to get a direct competitor down are needed, especially as Schumi is now getting up to speed.

  7. Ivan Vinitskyy said on 13th May 2010, 18:32

    Am I the only one who doesn’t find anything wrong with what Lewis said?

    • Glenn said on 13th May 2010, 18:56

      Comments of a strong competitor. If I was his Team boss I would want my driver to be no other way.

      • LondonRacer said on 14th May 2010, 10:37

        THANK YOU

        he can walk the talk most of the time… and he is a one nice guy…

        and of course he has had his share of accidents… if he was in Williams and named Nakajima, nobody would have cared… in my opinion, the latter was one of the most reckless drivers out there

        Lewis’ racing style is very different from many others – without him F1 would have been just plain boring, if the cameras were following the rest of the top guys during the races (we’d have fallen asleep, with all the downforce and lack of overtaking)

        Many racing drivers like winge about Lewis because secretly they wouldn’t want him to be staring at their cars’ rears

        Ferrari: “Lewis is behind you”
        Alonso: “I don’t want to hear that”

        And Alonso is a two-faced arrogant driver with very big cojones – he spoke out against his teams in Spanish many times (behind their backs)

  8. Kaz said on 13th May 2010, 18:32

    For Christ sake Lewis!! Don’t get sucked into these silly and pointless questions!! These questions are asked to lower you into comments that they will take and blow out of proportion.

    Don’t let them get the better of you brother.

  9. Brawn said on 13th May 2010, 18:53

    whats it like up on that high horse lewis?

  10. Oh my god keith, what have you done? the lewis haters have come back in force with this article…nooooooooooo

    jk btw.

  11. Still said on 13th May 2010, 19:17

    Nice joke Lewis:)

  12. Icthyes said on 13th May 2010, 19:24

    Sorry Lewis, but it’ll never happen. You can win 6 more WDC and have no more incidents (as if that’s ever possible for any multiple WDC), and there will always be those who will bring up your mistakes, twist every 50/50 situation against you, and flatly deny your talent and personality because it’s in their best interests to do so. It’s the world you live in.

    Your only consolation is most of your detractors will have taken their stance before being “shocked” by your controversies anyway – assuming you don’t do a Piquet, Senna, or Schumacher, which would make everyone lose respect for you, and rightly so.

  13. OEL said on 13th May 2010, 19:33

    Hamilton’s driving at Monza in 2008 says it all, doesn’t it…?

    • Patrickl said on 13th May 2010, 22:17

      Yeah that was superb. Amazing how he almost won that race.

      and then some dumb people whine about how he overtook Glock and took the line insted of letting him sit next to him through a corner … *sigh*

      • OEL said on 13th May 2010, 23:19

        He pushed Glock on to the grass! without having to let Glock repass him. In the same race, Massa passed Robberg fair and square, but the stewards forced him to let Rosberg pass. And Hamilton also pushed Webber to the escape route in the very same race. I son’t understand how the stewards think, if they actually are…

        • LondonRacer said on 14th May 2010, 10:38

          If you had another car on your left, (i.e. no room to give to Webber), what would you do?

          Noone pushed anyone.. Webber is just not nearly as skilled… If you get overtaken in the corner, fight for it or let go. Happens all the time

          • Brake Bias said on 15th May 2010, 1:36

            Yep, Webber is not skilled again. Think about this, if Webber had not conceded the line then HAMILTON would have hit him. Then the likes of you would be moaning that Webber was not skilled enough to get out of the way!!!!

            It seems that Webber is damned if he does and damned if he does not.

  14. I think it’s a shame that some Hamilton fans today, as with some Schumacher fans yesterday, think their driver is immune to criticism.

    In Schumacher’s case, he did something stupid and is rightly taken to task for it. It was three years ago, yes, but the fact that he has never admitted fault nor apologised for his actions makes it still relevant. He has never answered the questions, so of course people are going to keep asking them.

    For Hamilton, he has opened his mouth (again) and said something that he perhaps shouldn’t have. Talking about Schumacher’s “tainted legacy” when he himself has been accused of pushing other drivers off the track, and various other allegations of unsporting behaviour, was not the wisest move in the world. If he didn’t expect to draw some criticism for it, then he isn’t very bright.

    The point is that public figures like Schumacher and Hamilton are going to be held to account for what they say and do. That’s not a weakness of the media (including Keith, who has come in for a fair bit of flak from the fans over the past day or so), it’s a strength.

    • Cacarella said on 13th May 2010, 21:17

      Sorry Andy, I politely disagree.

      I don’t think an apology from MS will make a difference in this case and nor do I think that anyone can make him accountable. This is a sporting incident and he was held accountable by the stewards of the even and penalized three years ago. Everyone knows what he did, Everyone saw it. I don’t need him to be the politician that stands at a podium with his wife and children at his side, pretending to wipe away tears as he apologizes for having sexual relations with a twelve year old Nicaraguan boy in the bathroom at the train terminal.

      An apology means nothing when you know deep down that given the opportunity he will re-offend. As will Lewis one day.

  15. Mr JoeBlack said on 13th May 2010, 19:42

    Well I really can’t understand one thing.
    if shumi is so bad and he have a bad reputation, so why every on in the formula 1 world, including the media are talking all the time about him?

    for Lewis, i would say ” on what scale u choose, Shumi is 7 time by far better than u”

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