Mercedes: A weekend to forget for Schumacher

2011 Turkish GP team review

Schumacher lagged behind Rosberg in qualifying and hit Petrov in the race.

Michael Schumacher Nico Rosberg
Qualifying position 8 3
Qualifying time comparison (Q3) 1’26.646 (+1.072) 1’25.574
Race position 12 5
Laps 58/58 58/58
Pit stops 4 4

Mercedes drivers’ lap times throughout the race (in seconds):

http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/charts/2011drivercolours.csv
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58
Michael Schumacher 99.759 97.601 119.115 94.122 94.505 94.817 95.072 94.908 94.583 94.565 95.027 96.894 97.1 96.246 109.473 93.804 93.523 93.418 93.464 93.739 94.012 93.236 93.266 93.037 93.115 93.324 93.357 93.35 93.587 94.21 107.706 92.313 92.746 94.436 93.403 92.48 92.977 92.977 93.589 95.602 92.784 92.369 93.445 93.128 93.11 107.419 91.153 91.445 91.338 91.451 91.808 94.008 92.524 94.166 91.899 91.527 91.936 93.034
Nico Rosberg 96.559 94.608 94.412 94.348 95.428 95.776 95.299 95.664 95.04 94.997 111.58 93.397 94.149 94.229 94.219 94.285 94.193 94.537 94.97 96.548 96.644 96.396 110.024 93.92 93.106 93.367 94.161 93.045 93.102 93.445 93.657 93.616 93.481 108.23 91.711 91.877 91.619 91.359 91.336 92.223 91.588 91.782 91.8 91.74 106.213 90.92 90.573 90.889 90.825 90.687 90.871 90.763 90.808 91.279 90.605 90.673 90.917 91.607
Michael Schumacher, Mercedes, Istanbul, 2011

Michael Schumacher, Mercedes, Istanbul, 2011

Michael Schumacher

It was looking good for Schumacher as he ended final practice a mere thousandth of a second slower than Sebastian Vettel.

But it started to go downhill in qualifying as he fell short of his team mate’s lap time by a full second. And this time there was no faulty DRS to explain the deficit.

He said: “It was just strange, it seemed that the more I pushed on my last lap, the more went wrong. I was at the limit of what I had in my hand but the car was just sliding around and therefore I never got into my rhythm.”

He gained a place from Vitaly Petrov at the start but refused to surrender the position even when Petrov moved down the inside of him at turn 12. Schumacher broke his front wing, forcing an early pit stop.

That left him in the thick of the action, swapping places with the Toro Rosso drivers and seeing Felipe Massa come past him twice. The last time the Ferrari driver came by it was to demote Schumacher to 12th, where he finished.

He said: “Obviously I am not very happy with my weekend, but I’m responsible myself for the result.

“The incident with Petrov kind of dictated my race: we were very close and I was surprised that we touched but it was mostly my mistake.”

Michael Schumacher 2011 form guide

Nico Rosberg

The theme of 2011 at Mercedes seems to be much the same as it was in 2010: Rosberg quietly, unobtrusively getting the job done while Schumacher’s comeback increasingly looks like a mistake.

In qualifying his W02 was ‘best of the rest’ behind the Red Bulls. But the car proved hard on its tyres on a race fuel load and despite taking second off the line Rosberg was easily passed by Mark Webber and Fernando Alonso in the DRS zone.

He fell behind the McLaren drivers over the course of his pit stops. But having kept soft tyres for his last two stints he was able to take a place back from Jenson Button to finish fifth.

Nico Rosberg 2011 form guide

2011 Turkish Grand Prix

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