Michael Schumacher vs Giuseppe Farina

Champion of championsPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

The first round in the Champion of Champions pairs up the sport’s most prolific title winner, Michael Schumacher, with the original world champion, Giuseppe Farina.

On the face of it the pair seem to have little in common. These are both drivers that sometimes drew criticism from their peers for their driving, particularly their defensive moves.

But while Farina claimed the first ever world championship for Alfa Romeo in 1950 the following year his team mate Juan Manuel Fangio turned the tables on him.

That’s something that rarely happened to Schumacher, at least until his 2010 comeback when he partnered Nico Rosberg at Mercedes.

Schumacher is of course best known for his record five consecutive championships while driving for Ferrari. His 180-race stint with the Scuderia is the longest any driver in F1 history has remained with a single team.

Which of these drivers should go through to the next round of the Champion of Champions? Vote for which you think was best below and explain who you voted for and why in the comments.

Michael Schumacher Giuseppe Farina
Michael Schumacher, Mercedes, Istanbul, 2010 Giuseppe Farina
Titles 1994, 1995, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004 1950
Second in title year/s Damon Hill, Damon Hill, Mika Hakkinen, David Coulthard, Rubens Barrichello, Kimi R??ikk??nen, Rubens Barrichello Juan Manuel Fangio
Teams Jordan, Benetton, Ferrari, Mercedes Alfa Romeo, Ferrari
Notable team mates Nelson Piquet, Eddie Irvine, Rubens Barrichello Juan Manuel Fangio, Alberto Ascari, Mike Hawthorn
Starts 268 33
Wins 91 (33.96%) 5 (15.15%)
Poles 68 (25.37%) 5 (15.15%)
Modern points per start1 14.05 13.55
% car failures2 8.21 15.15
Modern points per available finish3 15.30 15.96
Notes Missed several races in 1999 after breaking his leg at Silverstone Had several non-championship Grand Prix successes before 1950
Retired in 2006 after 11 seasons with Ferrari Badly burned in a crash at Monza in 1954
Returned with Mercedes in 2010 Retired the following season, still suffering from his injuries
Bio Michael Schumacher Giuseppe Farina

1 How many points they scored in their career, adjusted to the 2010 points system, divided by the number of races they started
2 The percentage of races in which they were not classified due to a mechanical failure
3 How many points they scored in their career, adjusted to the 2010 points system, divided by the number of starts in which they did not suffer a race-ending mechanical failure

Which was the better world champion driver?

  • Michael Schumacher (86%)
  • Giuseppe Farina (14%)

Total Voters: 711

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Images ?? Mercedes (Schumacher), uncredited (Farina)

140 comments on “Michael Schumacher vs Giuseppe Farina”

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  1. Schumi was best. However, Farina (although for me I’d probably never rate him alongside Schumi) was passed his best by the time the F1 championship started and I feel he was better than he’s usually rated.

    As you’ve kicked off with farina I’ll wander off topic and say that Nuvolari was around Farina’s time and if he was in this I’d rather him higher than Giuseppe and as one of the all time greats but obviously I can’t here :P

    I love this idea though Keith. It should be a great bit of fun in the off season and stir up some good debate and I’m really excited to see the champions go up against each other with their stats! We’ll never have the joy of seeing the past stars race against this generation but this is probably as close as we’ll ever get to seeing how they’d do :)

    1. Yeah, so I’d considered my response for quite some time, an basically you’ve covered it. Pretty much bang on, imma go pick fights with others opinions instead.

    2. I perfectly agree with Steph here on having to choose Schumi before Farina.

      But Farina was a very good driver, just look at his points per available finish. When also taking in account that in 1950 he was a closing a bit of being comparable to Schumi 2010 on age and being on the downturn, he might have been a lot more successfull had the championship started a few years earlier.

    3. There’s no doubt that Farina was brilliant, but it’s hard to pick him ahead of a 7-times World Champion.

    4. How was Schumy partnered with Farina and not someone else? Are the pairs picken randomly?
      Anyway, I’m surprised Farina isn’t far from Schumy.

  2. oooooooo cruel first voting I believe keith.

    1. But i give Schumi the vote, only wish Farina was 10 years younger in his f1 days so he could of done more.

      1. Btw keith shouldn’t Nico Rosberg consider going under notable team mate?

        1. and Felipe?, or are you just keeping it short etc? or title winning team mates?

          1. Felipe was almost champion in 2008, remember? The same position as Rubens at his highest.

          2. Problem is that Felipe and Schumacher werent teammates in 2008.

          3. I suppose Rubens Barricello is notable also for being one of the youngest pole sitters, being with Schumi at Ferrari for a long time (with quite some “memorable” situations) as well as being a driver of over a record 300 GPs.

            Although Massa might be considered noteworthy for being coached by Schumi and coming withing an inch of the 2008 title, he has not broken any records yet.

        2. i’d say Rosberg probably isn’t a notable team mate quite yet as he hasn’t won a race. Massa probably should be though

          1. Schumacher didn’t win a race either this year …

          2. Obviously, we’re referring to career wins, not 2010 wins Patrick.

        3. Nico Rosberg isn’t Schumacher’s notable team mate because Rosberg a) hasn’t achieved anything special b) wasn’t Schumacher’s team mate during Schumacher’s greatest seasons.

  3. Schumacher, no contest. The guy re-defined what it meant to be an F1 driver and even if he did benefit from a ridiculously dominant car for two years and a weak opposition in 2001, you really need to be selective to explain away the other four championships.

    By the way Keith, I didn’t find this on the main page, I had to go through the Polls section, it wasn’t even in the “Champion of Champions Articles” category linked in yesterday’s article. Some kind of mistake? Using Chrome btw.

    1. I’m using Chrome and it appeared right on the front page for me…

      1. It will be something to do with the WordPress Cache I’m assuming. Will just appear after for some people depending on how your browser is calling it.

        Or I may be making everything up…

      2. Minutes later I went on facebook and the update was posted, hey presto it was on here too!

    2. I agree with Icthyes. This is a particularly difficult matchup as well because the two drivers are as far apart as could possibly be in terms of eras. I’d go so far as to say its impossible to compare the two as they are in such stark contrast to each other, but I suppose that criticism can be levelled at any of these matchups.

      As rightly pointed out though by Icthyes, Schumacher defined the modern F1 driver. That may or may not be to the benefit of the sport, but the current grid are modelled after him more than anyone else.

      1. That’s true, because we can’t compare I suppose it’s best to look at them in terms of lasting impact. Still, when it comes down to comparing the lasting impact of say, Fangio and Schumacher, that is where the problems start.

        1. Both well said. It is also a difficult choice because we have so much less data on Farina.

          That is of course the trouble with doing this. Still, it we can do our best. I had to choose Schumacher – although in a way I would have liked a “not enough data to decide” option on Farina.

  4. This time Schumi, but all in all Fangio forever!

    1. And the sadest thing is that Juan Manuel was still alive when Ayrton passed away…

      Poor Juan … He had to support the pain of loosing the Brazilian hero of motor racing

      If I weel remember, Juan himself did not consider to be the greatest driver himself but he thought Ayrton deserved that place…

  5. Schumacher, hands down

  6. Haha what a cruel first face-off. Schumacher no doubt.

    1. There are two all-time records where Farina sits ahead of Schumacher.

      Oldest race winner: Farina (46) is 2nd to Fagoli (53).

      Oldest Champion: Farina (43) is 2nd to Fangio (46).

      Schumacher is currently 41 (he turns 42 tomorrow), but hasn’t won a race since 2006 nor a championship since 2004. If he were to win in Bahrain he’d go to 7th on the oldest race winners list. If he continues to 2012 he has a shot of knocking Farina off on the oldest Champion list, but unless his plans change he’s not going to get near him for oldest race winner. Nor is he likely to ever top either list. I’d love to see him do so though. ;)

  7. Voted for Shumi but when the time comes you don’t need to be rocket scientist to figure out who will get my final vote.

  8. No contest, Michael Schumacher. Farina never captured as much attention as Schumacher, when you talk about the greatest Formula One drivers, you never hear a mention for Farina. Even drivers like Stirling Moss and Gilles Villeneuve who never won a championship get mentioned more. When you hear someone talking about Formula One in the ’50s or ’60s, you rarely hear anything on Farina’s championship success. You normally hear about Clark, Moss, Fangio and Ascari.

    1. This is true. You may want to consider that WW2 rather inconveniently occurred during the period in which Farina would have been in his prime though.

  9. My vote goes for Schumacher..

    1. Yep, hard to argue with 7 championships, 12 finishes in the top 3 of a championship (which would have been 13 if not for the DSQ) and 91 race wins.

    2. Schumacher all the way. Apologies to runner up.


  10. 1. Fangio
    2. Schumacher
    3. Prost
    5. Ascari
    6. Clark
    7. Senna
    8. Stewart

    1. What happened to the 4th rank?

      1. I misnumbered them, that’s what happened.
        Ascari is 4th of course, Clark 5th and so on.

    2. Jeffrey Powell
      8th January 2011, 16:19

      Are we talking of Driving ability or team manipulation, If its the later Schumacher should have all the top ten places.

  11. Scumacher is a living legend, I couldnt pick many people over him.

  12. schumacher for sure.
    The only thing that gives farina more value to me, it’s the era he was driving. That era required drivers to have a real chance to die every race, for very little in return.

    1. …for very little in return.

      For the thrill of it.

  13. Farina certainly had better competition than Schumi, beating Fangio is no mean feat. I have to go for Schumacher though, no one else dominated the sport like him.

    1. Well, Fangio did. Fangio did it in that era, 5 straight titles, less races. Every bit Schumachers match for dominance.

      1. I absolutely agree about Fangio’s dominance in his era and he has one stat that even Schumacher can’t touch, he won 47% of the championship races he started in compared to Schumi’s 34%! But he only won 4 straight WDC’s not 5 (1951, 1954-57) and had to sit out 1952 with a broken neck.

      2. 4 straight titles. Ascari won ’52-’53, Hawthorn ’58.

        1. nitpickers. What’s one un-consecutive title in the grand scheme of things?

  14. At the bit where the page splits in two – with Schuamcher’s info on the left, and Farina’s info on the right – I can’t see the Farino stuff at all.

    I’m using the mobile site on an iPod Touch.

    1. The mobile site should just crash and burn in hell. I can’t imagine a single modern phone where the desktop site isn’t better by a mile.

      – And even worse; there is no way to get to the normal site from the mobile site.

      1. It’s not too bad – the commenst display well by taing up the full width of the screen – it’s just pictures are usually cut off (like the one in the title here – and as I say – that piece of information about Farina!

        Also comment replies are out of sync with the comment they are replying too.

        1. I’m aware of these problems and they are being addressed in the next version of the mobile site (as I have said before).

  15. When you convert it to 2010 points, there’s not a lot to choose between them, is there? And since Farina had more mechanical failures, his 13.55 points per start is a very impressive stat.

    However, my vote goes to Schumacher. It’s not easy being at the top for a good 15 seasons especially in the modern era. Plus is it fair to say that for the ’50/’51 seasons the Alfa was nearly as dominant as the ’02/’04 Ferrari? If so then Farina didn’t fight for the championship with a less-than-best car, unlike Schumacher’s first two championships.

    1. Farina did actually have many starts though did he, and Farina went straight into a top team. While Schumacher stats must always be looked at through the prisim of the wilderness years at Ferrari.

  16. Easy choice at this stage! Even if he’s not your favorite and/or you can’t stand him, taking everything at face value and looking at the facts objectively, Schumacher’s got to be at least in the top 5 F1 drivers of all time. Can’t say the same for Farina even if he did beat Fangio.

  17. Like several people have already pointed out, Farina
    was past his prime going into the first chmpionship.

    But I feel that even had he been younger he still would have lost out to fangio and ascari, en for that alone I would vote schumacher….not to mention 7 titles and a dominitaion of the sport that, although it was awe inspiring I personally never hope to see again.

  18. I voted Farina purely because he beat Fangio. Likewise, I’ll vote for Fangio when he comes up and Hakkinen. These sort of giant-killing performances really show a how a driver performs under pressure.

    1. Interesting side-point, Hakkinen was definitely second only to Schumacher in my eyes but he had clearly the best car in 1998 and nearly lost to Eddie Irvine in 1999*, Schumacher would probably have been champion if not for his broken leg. So how do you sqaure that with the “giant-killing” factor?

      Also, Fangio won his titles by making sure he was in the best car, even switching teams mid-season (in 1954, I think). Compare that with the “Schumacher just had the best car for 3 years” argument.

      *Ironically, a team order that prevented Irvine from passing an ailing Schumacher in the French Grand Prix cost Ferrari their first championship in 20 years.

      1. Irvine was only close to Häkkinen, because Mika s technical issues… Remembering Silverstone, Hockenheim or Melbourne? Irvine had a reliable car, that was his main advantage, not his abilities, or pace… Under normal circumstances with no luck involved, Irvine would have finished only 3rd…

  19. Went for Schuy. I have nothing against Farina, says a lot about a driver if Sir Stirling Moss idolised him (and copied his technique) but the War cost him the best days of his driver career (and that F1 didnt exist ofc).

  20. Simply on the basis of 7 championships to 1 it has to be Schumacher. BTW first post, registered to vote champion of champions.

    1. Eh, what about 5 to seven? Or 7 to 3. I don’t like that method, stats, stats and damn lies.

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