Video reveals Schumacher’s start-line blunder

2012 Hungarian Grand PrixPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

The Hungarian Grand Prix got off to a false start after a blunder by Michael Schumacher on the grid.

The Mercedes driver pulled up in Heikki Kovalainen’s grid position ahead of the original start of the race, mistakenly lining up 19th instead of 17th.

This video shot by a fan shows Schumacher’s Mercedes on its correct starting position before the formation lap.

But when the field return to the grid for the start Schumacher, partly obscured by an advertising hoarding, pulled up behind the vacant space his car should have occupied.

This caused some confusion behind Schumacher, with other drivers not taking the correct positions on the grid as a result. Race director Charlie Whiting aborted the start of the race and sent the drivers around to form up again.

At this point Schumacher compounded his error by switching his engine off, meaning he had to start from the pit lane. “Our engine temperatures were very high before the start, and when the yellow lights came on, I switched the engine off,” he said.

Thanks to Girts for the tip.

2012 Hungarian Grand Prix

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92 comments on “Video reveals Schumacher’s start-line blunder”

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  1. Jerry Moore
    30th July 2012, 18:38

    This was a fantastic video!!! Great location, amazingly high quality, not too much panning and zooming and it made me feel just like I was in the grandstands watching the race. Many thanks to whoever posted this.

  2. Phil C'de Baca
    30th July 2012, 19:04

    Dear Michael, you are invited to your going away party. We will have cake and ice cream and party hats. Thanks for the effort but now it’s time for you seat to be taken by someone with a future in Formula 1 not a past.

  3. Amusing to read all the anti-Schumacher posters here. His current appearances as the old man of the track has made for a lot of added interest to the past three F1 seasons. Never a big admirer or even a fan during all those many successes the records will forever show. Simply because of all the blind eye turning and other stewards’ assists for anything relating to a certain team in red during that period in F1 history. Despite all that, I for one am glad the old man of the tracks has been about the place during his F1 career No. 2. As for comparisons with his team mate, not much in it and doesn’t really matter as both are driving for an underachieving race team performing well below expectations. I shall be pleased to see him participating next season too and if ever Ross Brawn gets the Mercedes-AMG outfit in better shape to produce a more competitive car, all you Schumacher naysayers could well have to revise your mindsets.

    Regarding his excess of bad luck this season which is exceeding the law of averages by some considerable margin, will the person sticking pins in a cardboard cut-out of the car the old man of the track is driving please stop it you nasty Voodoo person you … :lots of larfs:

  4. george brammah
    30th July 2012, 23:27

    am a schmui fan but i fail to see how he managed this i recon hes to relaxed this time round waving at cameras and blowing kisses seen him do this more this year than the first 16 years in f1!

  5. It’s Ricciardo’s fault. Watch the start of the first formation lap. He passes Schumacher. Schumacher probably didn’t notice and thought he was behind Vergne. Remember he was sandwiched between two STRs and they look the same. At the end of the first formation lap, he simply lined up behind the STR that he thought was Vergne’s. Ricciardo should have been given a penalty for passing.

    1. The video above (2:53) shows Schumacher sandwiched between two STRs in 17th position at the end of the formation lap so when he went to take up his grid spot then he would have been correct in lining up behind the Torro Rosso in front of him on the approach.

  6. Schumacher must receive a 5 place grid penalty for blocking Grosjean at Hungarian GP race. Romain found himself stuck behind the Mercedes of Michael Schumacher ‘who didn’t respect the blue flags at all’ costing the Lotus driver a lot of time. ‘Because of this I lost a place to Kimi (Raikkonen), and at the same time a possible chance to fight for the win,’ he said.

  7. I believe that the things are not definitely so simple.
    The team should have contacted him through the radio very quickly and the only thing he should have done was just to move the car on the next car cell. However, the team was having big problems with the telemetry and was thinking that the engine was going to overheat. After the end of the race he knew what had happened to him but he did not mention a word about that as if he did not know about the mistaken grid cell. If you take a very close look at the Michael Schumacher’s interviews when he had the bigger share of the guilt he always spoke about it at some length and apologised publicly to the team. In this case I believe that the team had done something more serious and that’s why nobody still has not talked about the case at all. Nobody has said even a word about it.

    1. *In this case I believe that the team did something very serious this time and that’s why nobody has talked about the case at all. Nobody has said even a word about it!

  8. Either way it’s a mistake that has been made but one which can be easily avoided and hasn’t been made for quite a while. It’s such a (due to a lack of a better word) stupid mistake to make, I mean if it was for tactical reasons it was a very poor move. I mean what advantage could be gained? First corner carnage was a possibility but would that be worth all that effort just to run a little later through what would be shards of carbon fibre? Anyway it’s another mistake by either MSC or Merc and they need to sort the error proneness of there team out.

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