Schumacher’s 91 wins record looks safe for now

F1 Statistics

Michael Schumacher, Ferrari, Shanghai, 2006Fernando Alonso and Sebastian Vettel’s wins this year have raised them higher up among the most successful F1 drivers of all time.

Alonso is now tied with Nigel Mansell as the four most-successful driver ever in terms of race wins. At the last round Vettel surpassed Jackie Stewart’s tally of 27 race wins, which stood as the record for 14 years.

But even if you took Alonso and Vettel’s win totals and threw in Lewis Hamilton’s for good measure, you’d still be well short of the ultimate record.

Michael Schumacher’s 91 race wins is 60 more than the next best driver currently racing in F1.

Most wins by an F1 driver: 1950-2013

Here’s how the record for most Grand Prix victories has grown since the beginning of the world championship in 1950:

http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/charts/winsrecord.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 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 99 100 101 102 103 104 105 106 107 108 109 110 111 112 113 114 115 116 117 118 119 120 121 122 123 124 125 126 127 128 129 130 131 132 133 134 135 136 137 138 139 140 141 142 143 144 145 146 147 148 149 150 151 152 153 154 155 156 157 158 159 160 161 162 163 164 165 166 167 168 169 170 171 172 173 174 175 176 177 178 179 180 181 182 183 184 185 186 187 188 189 190 191 192 193 194 195 196 197 198 199 200 201 202 203 204 205 206 207 208 209 210 211 212 213 214 215 216 217 218 219 220 221 222 223 224 225 226 227 228 229 230 231 232 233 234 235 236 237 238 239 240 241 242 243 244 245 246 247 248 249 250 251 252 253 254 255 256 257 258 259 260 261 262 263 264 265 266 267 268 269 270 271 272 273 274 275 276 277 278 279 280 281 282 283 284 285 286 287 288 289 290 291 292 293 294 295 296 297 298 299 300 301 302 303 304 305 306 307 308 309 310 311 312 313 314 315 316 317 318 319 320 321 322 323 324 325 326 327 328 329 330 331 332 333 334 335 336 337 338 339 340 341 342 343 344 345 346 347 348 349 350 351 352 353 354 355 356 357 358 359 360 361 362 363 364 365 366 367 368 369 370 371 372 373 374 375 376 377 378 379 380 381 382 383 384 385 386 387 388 389 390 391 392 393 394 395 396 397 398 399 400 401 402 403 404 405 406 407 408 409 410 411 412 413 414 415 416 417 418 419 420 421 422 423 424 425 426 427 428 429 430 431 432 433 434 435 436 437 438 439 440 441 442 443 444 445 446 447 448 449 450 451 452 453 454 455 456 457 458 459 460 461 462 463 464 465 466 467 468 469 470 471 472 473 474 475 476 477 478 479 480 481 482 483 484 485 486 487 488 489 490 491 492 493 494 495 496 497 498 499 500 501 502 503 504 505 506 507 508 509 510 511 512 513 514 515 516 517 518 519 520 521 522 523 524 525 526 527 528 529 530 531 532 533 534 535 536 537 538 539 540 541 542 543 544 545 546 547 548 549 550 551 552 553 554 555 556 557 558 559 560 561 562 563 564 565 566 567 568 569 570 571 572 573 574 575 576 577 578 579 580 581 582 583 584 585 586 587 588 589 590 591 592 593 594 595 596 597 598 599 600 601 602 603 604 605 606 607 608 609 610 611 612 613 614 615 616 617 618 619 620 621 622 623 624 625 626 627 628 629 630 631 632 633 634 635 636 637 638 639 640 641 642 643 644 645 646 647 648 649 650 651 652 653 654 655 656 657 658 659 660 661 662 663 664 665 666 667 668 669 670 671 672 673 674 675 676 677 678 679 680 681 682 683 684 685 686 687 688 689 690 691 692 693 694 695 696 697 698 699 700 701 702 703 704 705 706 707 708 709 710 711 712 713 714 715 716 717 718 719 720 721 722 723 724 725 726 727 728 729 730 731 732 733 734 735 736 737 738 739 740 741 742 743 744 745 746 747 748 749 750 751 752 753 754 755 756 757 758 759 760 761 762 763 764 765 766 767 768 769 770 771 772 773 774 775 776 777 778 779 780 781 782 783 784 785 786 787 788 789 790 791 792 793 794 795 796 797 798 799 800 801 802 803 804 805 806 807 808 809 810 811 812 813 814 815 816 817 818 819 820 821 822 823 824 825 826 827 828 829 830 831 832 833 834 835 836 837 838 839 840 841 842 843 844 845 846 847 848 849 850 851 852 853 854 855 856 857 858 859 860 861 862 863 864 865 866 867 868 869 870 871 872 873 874 875 876 877 878 879 880 881 882
Giuseppe Farina 1 1 1 2 2 2 3 3 3 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5
Juan Manuel Fangio 0 1 1 1 2 3 3 4 4 4 5 5 5 5 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 7 8 8 9 10 10 11 12 13 13 14 14 14 15 16 16 17 18 18 18 18 18 19 20 20 21 22 22 23 23 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24
Johnnie Parsons 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
Alberto Ascari 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 2 2 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 9 10 11 11 12 12 13 13 13 13 13 13 13 13 13 13 13 13 13
Jim Clark 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 2 2 2 3 3 3 4 5 6 7 7 8 8 9 10 10 11 12 12 13 13 13 13 13 13 14 14 15 16 17 18 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 20 20 20 20 21 21 21 22 22 22 22 23 24 25
Jackie Stewart 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 4 4 4 5 5 6 7 7 8 9 10 10 11 11 11 11 11 12 12 12 12 12 12 12 12 12 12 12 12 12 13 14 14 15 16 17 17 17 18 18 19 19 19 19 19 20 20 20 20 20 21 22 22 22 23 23 24 25 25 25 25 26 27 27 27 27 27
Alain Prost 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 1 1 2 3 3 3 4 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 6 6 6 7 7 7 8 8 9 9 9 9 9 10 10 10 11 11 12 12 12 12 12 13 13 14 14 15 16 17 17 17 18 18 18 18 19 19 20 20 21 21 21 21 21 21 21 22 23 23 23 23 23 23 23 23 24 24 24 24 25 26 26 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 28 28 28 28 28 29 29 30 31 31 31 32 32 32 32 32 32 33 34 34 35 35 35 35 35 36 36 37 38 38 38 38 39 39 39 39 39 39 40 40 40 40 41 42 43 43 43 43 43 43 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 44 45 45 45 46 47 47 48 49 50 51 51 51 51 51 51 51
Michael Schumacher 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 3 4 5 6 6 7 8 8 8 9 9 9 9 10 10 10 11 11 11 12 13 13 14 14 15 15 16 16 16 17 18 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 20 20 20 20 20 20 21 22 22 22 22 22 22 22 23 23 24 25 25 25 25 26 26 26 26 27 27 27 27 28 28 28 28 29 30 31 31 31 32 32 33 33 33 33 33 34 35 35 35 35 35 35 35 35 35 35 35 35 35 36 37 38 38 38 39 39 40 40 40 40 40 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 46 46 47 47 48 48 49 50 50 50 51 52 52 52 53 54 54 55 56 57 58 58 59 59 60 61 62 62 63 63 63 64 64 64 64 65 66 67 67 68 68 68 68 68 68 69 70 70 71 72 73 74 75 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 82 82 82 83 83 83 83 83 83 83 83 83 83 84 84 84 84 84 84 84 84 84 84 84 84 84 84 85 86 86 86 86 86 87 88 89 89 89 90 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91 91
Jenson Button 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 3 3 4 5 6 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 8 8 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 10 10 10 10 11 11 11 11 12 12 12 12 12 13 13 13 13 13 13 13 13 13 13 13 14 14 14 14 14 14 14 14 15 15 15 15 15
Kimi Raikkonen 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 3 4 4 5 5 5 5 5 6 7 7 8 8 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 11 12 12 12 12 12 13 13 14 15 15 16 16 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 18 19 19 19 20 20 20 20
Fernando Alonso 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 3 4 4 4 5 5 5 6 6 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 8 9 9 10 10 10 11 12 13 14 14 14 14 14 14 14 14 15 15 15 16 16 16 17 17 17 17 17 18 18 18 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 20 21 21 21 21 21 21 21 21 21 21 21 21 21 21 21 21 21 21 21 21 22 22 22 22 22 22 22 22 22 22 23 23 23 24 25 25 26 26 26 26 26 26 26 26 26 26 26 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 28 28 28 28 28 28 29 29 30 30 30 30 30 30 30 30 30 30 30 30 30 31 31
Lewis Hamilton 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 4 4 4 5 5 5 5 5 6 6 6 7 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 10 10 10 10 11 11 11 11 11 11 11 11 11 11 12 13 13 13 13 13 14 14 14 14 14 14 14 14 14 15 15 15 15 15 15 15 16 16 16 16 16 16 16 16 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 17 18 18 18 18 19 19 20 20 20 20 20 20 21 21 21 21 21 21
Sebastian Vettel 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 4 4 5 5 5 6 6 6 6 6 6 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 8 8 9 10 11 12 12 13 14 15 15 16 16 16 16 17 18 19 19 20 21 21 21 21 21 21 22 22 22 22 22 22 22 22 22 22 23 24 25 26 26 26 26 26 27 27 28
Record: Fangio to Clark 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24
Record: Clark to Stewart 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25 25
Record: Stewart to Prost 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27 27
Record: Prost to Schumacher 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51 51
Record: Schumacher to ? 91 91 91 91

Giuseppe Farina won the first ever world championship race but Juan Manuel Fangio and Alberto Ascari quickly outstripped his wins tally. The latter lost his life in 1955, leaving Fangio to set the benchmark at 24 wins when he retired from racing in 1958. Two of those were shared victories with other drivers.

Armed with the Lotus 49, Jim Clark would probably moved the tally further than he did had he not been killed in 1968. Fellow Scotsman Jackie Stewart picked up the baton and his 27 wins stood as the record from 1973 to 1987.

Niki Lauda came closest to Stewart’s record in the meantime, winning 25 times. But it was his former McLaren team mate Alain Prost who finally beat it.

Prost already had 17 victories to his name when Ayrton Senna became a winner in 1985. Senna never surpassed the wins tally of his great rival. He came closest following his victory in the 1993 European Grand Prix at Donington Park, with 38 wins to Prost’s 45, but by the end of his final season Prost had raised the bar to 51. Three races later Senna lost his life at Imola.

In the absence of Prost and Senna plus Nelson Piquet and, later, Nigel Mansell, the way was clear for Michael Schumacher to begin his assault on the record books. The combination of his supreme talent and an often dominant Ferrari allowed him to push the record to extraordinary new heights.

Will Schumacher ever be caught?

Lee Wallard, Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser, Indianapolis 500, 1951Just as impressive as Schumacher’s total number of wins is the high rate of wins he enjoyed across 19 seasons of Formula One. Despite a winless three-year comeback with Mercedes he departed the sport having won almost 30% of all the races he started.

That’s more than Vettel and any of the other drivers enjoy at the moment. For Vettel to reach Schumacher’s tally at his current rate he would need to start a further 237 races which would probably take until 2027.

It’s not inconceivable the 25-year-old Vettel will carry on racing into his 21st season. But it’s doubtful Alonso, 31, will hang around until 2032 to amass the 591 starts he requires to match Schumacher’s win tally at his current rate.

It’s a statistical oddity that the driver who enjoys the highest win rate for world championship races is Lee Wallard, winner of the 1951 Indianapolis 500. The race countes towards the championship that year and it, along with the previous year’s race, were the only two championship events Wallard started.

Among regular grand prix drivers Fangio has the highest win rate. But Schumacher’s is especially impressive given it spanned a career of over 300 races.

Here are the top ten race winners in terms of total wins and their winning rate:

Driver Starts Most wins rank Wins Win rate rank Win rate (%)
Michael Schumacher 306 1 91 6 29.64
Alain Prost 199 2 51 9 25.63
Ayrton Senna 161 3 41 10 25.47
Nigel Mansell 187 4 31 16 16.58
Fernando Alonso 200 4 31 18 15.42
Sebastian Vettel 105 6 28 8 26.67
Jackie Stewart 99 7 27 7 27.27
Jim Clark 72 8 25 5 34.72
Niki Lauda 171 8 25 20 14.62
Juan Manuel Fangio 51 10 24 2 47.06
Lee Wallard 2 72 1 1 50.0
Alberto Ascari 32 21 13 3 40.63
Bill Vukovich 5 61 2 4 40.0

Over to you

The increasing number of races on the F1 calendar and improvements in driver safety go a long way towards explaining why the record for most wins has continued to grow.

But can it go much further? Will we ever see a driver hit 100 wins? And will someone on the grid today be the person to do it?

Have your say in the comments.

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53 comments on Schumacher’s 91 wins record looks safe for now

  1. erix said on 2nd May 2013, 17:43

    I remember Schumi said.. I see win number 100. Yeah right..

  2. Philippe (@philippe) said on 2nd May 2013, 18:43

    Vettel has won 28 races and he is 25 years old. Schuamcher won his 28th at 29 years old.
    He definitely can do it.

  3. Colossal Squid (@colossal-squid) said on 2nd May 2013, 18:53

    Hamilton in his six full seasons in F1 has averaged 3.5 wins per season. Alonso in 11 has averaged 2.81. Vettel has in his first 5 full seasons averaged 5.2 wins (excluding 2007 and anything so far in 2013). In Schumacher’s fifteen full seasons until his first retirement from 1992-2006 he averaged 6.07.

    Taking out his two wins in 1999 and excluding that season due to his broken leg, he averages 6.36. Including his three comeback seasons and ’99 this drops to a still impressive 5.05.
    Excluding Alonso’s winless 2009 season and his first season with Minardi that 2.81 rises to 3.444. All this means nothing (other than it was fun to work out!), and that Schumacher’s win/season stat is incredible, and in my view unlikely to be repeated. If Vettel was to compete for the next ten years (2013-2022) in order to match Schumacher’s record he would need 6.5 wins per season. If Vettel continues another 15, until 2027, he only needs a mere 4.333.

  4. WilliamB (@william-brierty) said on 2nd May 2013, 18:56

    I think this question comes down to two factors, one being talent distribution and the over being regulations. In terms of the first factor, I’m sure most of you would agree with me when I say that all of F1’s finest talent in the early 2000s was concentrated at Ferrari. Ross Brawn was the best strategist, Rory Byrne was the best designer, and after Hakkinen lost interest, Schumacher was clearly the best driver. OK, Coulthard change challenge…occasionally, Montoya could challenge…occasionally, Ralf could challenge… occasionally, and Barrichello…wasn’t allowed. Yes, Raikkonen and Alonso began to start nibbling at Schumacher’s rear wings in the later “scarlet years”, but they simply did not have the technical teams, as things stood then, to back up their talent. None of this is the case in 2013. In 2013 we have five champion, five of the finest drivers F1 has ever seen, in five different teams, all supposedly going for the title. OK, Red Bull have Newey and Vettel, but Ferrari have Alonso and Fry, Mercedes have Brawn and Hamilton… And then there our drivers like “the Nicos” and Felipe Massa, who will put in great performances this year. To put things simply, ever since the establishment of GP2, FR3.5 and other “ladder series”, the quality of the grid has been exceptional, and certainly suitable for any form of dominance.

    Moving onto my second factor, the “tyre war” was arguable the most important factor in the creation of Schumacher dominance. By having two manufacturers competing for the cash of the team you get tyres that fulfil the team’s requirement, i.e. durability, which obviously creates an extremely linear series of the fastest car winning every time. I don’t need to explain how this is not the case now. And now I shall move onto the highly subjective issue that is DRS. I know it is hated with a passion on this forum, and I am not so keen on it myself, but it brings the chaotic nature to a race that makes domination so difficult. In the past you only had to get your nose ahead with a good qualifying/start/fuel strategy and the win was yours. Now this no longer the case, as Hamilton proved in the excellent DRS created battle in Austin 2012. Put simply, with these regulations, and with another wave of regulatory turbulence coming next year, I simply cannot see the conditions needed for domination, especially with such a talented field all fighting in such chaotic races.

  5. WilliamB (@william-brierty) said on 2nd May 2013, 18:56

    I think this question comes down to two factors, one being talent distribution and the over being regulations. In terms of the first factor, I’m sure most of you would agree with me when I say that all of F1’s finest talent in the early 2000s was concentrated at Ferrari. Ross Brawn was the best strategist, Rory Byrne was the best designer, and after Hakkinen lost interest, Schumacher was clearly the best driver. OK, Coulthard change challenge…occasionally, Montoya could challenge…occasionally, Ralf could challenge… occasionally, and Barrichello…wasn’t allowed. Yes, Raikkonen and Alonso began to start nibbling at Schumacher’s rear wings in the later “scarlet years”, but they simply did not have the technical teams, as things stood then, to back up their talent. None of this is the case in 2013. In 2013 we have five champion, five of the finest drivers F1 has ever seen, in five different teams, all supposedly going for the title. OK, Red Bull have Newey and Vettel, but Ferrari have Alonso and Fry, Mercedes have Brawn and Hamilton… And then there our drivers like “the Nicos” and Felipe Massa, who will put in great performances this year. To put things simply, ever since the establishment of GP2, FR3.5 and other “ladder series”, the quality of the grid has been exceptional, and certainly suitable for any form of dominance.

    Moving onto my second factor, the “tyre war” was arguable the most important factor in the creation of Schumacher dominance. By having two manufacturers competing for the cash of the team you get tyres that fulfill the team’s requirement, i.e. durability, which obviously creates an extremely linear series of the fastest car winning every time. I don’t need to explain how this is not the case now. And now I shall move onto the highly subjective issue that is DRS. I know it is hated with a passion on this forum, and I am not so keen on it myself, but it brings the chaotic nature to a race that makes domination so difficult. In the past you only had to get your nose ahead with a good qualifying/start/fuel strategy and the win was yours. Now this no longer the case, as Hamilton proved in the excellent DRS created battle in Austin 2012. Put simply, with these regulations, and with another wave of regulatory turbulence coming next year, I simply cannot see the conditions needed for domination, especially with such a talented field all fighting in such chaotic races.

  6. krtekf1 (@krtekf1) said on 2nd May 2013, 22:40

    The number of MSC`s wins is really impresive. Vettel seems to be the most possible driver in the moment to beat MSC`s 7 WDC tittles, 69 poles and maybe also 91 wins. But the same I thought about Alonso in the end of 2006, and after that about Hamilton. I think that Vettel will also have some strugling years, so he will need to drive at least to the age of 36-7, if he wants to get close to those incredible numbers. But I really doubt that, because we have already many highly talented drivers and so potential serial winners in F1 (Hulk, Rosberg, Perez…) and some promising names for the future (Da Costa, …), who are just waiting for competitive car.

  7. Michael Brown (@lite992) said on 2nd May 2013, 23:58

    With the competition closer in recent seasons, I don’t think anyone will beat Schumacher’s record of wins unless Vettel dominates many seasons. However, I think the record of 7 WDCs is more likely to be broken.

  8. Adam Tate (@adam-tate) said on 3rd May 2013, 9:48

    It won’t happen. To fairly compare Vettel and Schumacher you have to lay out their careers side by side.

    Currently Vettel has 105 starts, in these 105 starts he has
    28 Wins, 49 Podiums, 38 Poles and 17 Fastest Laps. Which is incredibly impressive.

    But he is already behind Schumacher in 3 out of the 4 categories.
    When Schumacher had 105 Starts, he already had
    28 Wins, 58 Podiums, 17 Poles and 29 Fastest laps.

    Keep in Mind Schumacher had not yet reached his dominant era of 2000-2004 at this point. His 105th start was at the 1998 Monaco Grand Prix, early in his third season with Ferrari. At which point he had only 9 wins in a Ferrari, he would go on to get 63 more!

    I just can’t see Vettel winning 64 more races, no matter how long he sticks around. Could he set the all time record for Pole Positions, you bet! Will he for anything else? I highly doubt it.

  9. Robbie (@robbie) said on 3rd May 2013, 15:36

    Just as F1/FIA set up MS at Ferrari to end the WDC drought, so too would the FIA have to feel a motivation to prop up a driver in order for anyone to catch and surpass MS’s wins. If for example one were to say SV has the best chance, they’d have to start now by contracting him a subservient teammate, which would then give them the go ahead to build him a designer car, and then if they could also arrange that he have designer tires too, then perhaps SV might get close to the wins record. But I don’t see it happening. Also SV would have to become much more of a bully out there and be allowed to get away with meaningless penalties time and time again for infractions committed. Won’t happen. MS had highly illegal Benettons and had to whack DH for one of his Championships. That WDC shouldn’t have been allowed, and that was the general sentiment of the media and many fans at the time. Then MS was handed the sweetest deal not only of any F1 driver before or since, but probably one of the sweetest deals any athlete in any sport has ever received, and he was still an unethical boor on top of it all. And in 97 he was stripped of his second place standing but was allowed to keep his wins. No points equals 5 wins if you are MS.

    SV nor any driver will ever beat the wins record because it would take too much trumping up of everything toward him, which is why some posts above speak of another processional era like MS enjoyed never happening again. Thank goodness the odds are unlikely that another driver will ever be propped up and artificially made a record holder again. So far, I can respect any driver’s numbers that are even only half of MS’s when they have gained said numbers without a contracted non-competing teammate, without a designer car and tires, and without an extra 100 mill a year from the FIA to do it and without veto power on the rules as Ferrari enjoyed in the MS era.

    ie. the MS records are a false anomoly achieved because the FIA and F1 were motivated to see it happen post-Senna. It is unreasonable to expect anyone to beat the records in an actual apples to apples environment, unlike what MS had, and thank goodness nobody likely will have that much skewing toward him, by the very governing body, again.

    • Colossal Squid (@colossal-squid) said on 4th May 2013, 18:12

      Complete rubbish, where to begin in cutting through your clear hatred for Schumacher?

      The FIA conspiracy to hand him dominance? That he had no brilliant performances but was merely a ‘boor’ and a bully? That everything was designed for his needs or illegal? The only thing false here is your assessment of Schumacher’s career. Your claims are baseless (the need for Schumi dominance post Senna? Why?) His 91 wins are as legitimate as his talents, if you were around to watch him in the late 1990’s you would not dispute his ability behind the wheel or shrug off his talent as contrived by some massive, all enveloping conspiracy by the shady powers of the FIA. You sound like a conspiracy theorist and a poor one at that.

      • Robbie (@robbie) said on 6th May 2013, 15:21

        Hmmm…where to begin in cutting through your clear love of MS to the point of ignoring the facts.

        Fact. Nowhere did I say he didn’t have brilliant performances. My issue is the skewing toward him that allowed him the apples to oranges racing he enjoyed that helped him make his performances look brilliant.

        Fact. The Benettons had many illegalities and were banned from some races.

        Fact. MS was moved from Benetton where he was winning, to Ferrari where they weren’t, along with much of his crew from Benetton. Ask yourself why.

        Fact. MS’s teammates had contracts to be subservient. See RB’s comments post Austria 02 where he says, upon handing MS a win with metres to go, “I thought I should obey my contract.”

        Fact. Ferrari have admitted a one-rooster philosophy, and even recently it has been revealed, as it was back then, that Ferrari had veto power over the rules, not to mention getting upwards of 100mill per year, just because they are Ferrari, over and above what the other teams get.

        Fact. Denying any or all of these facts is just as conspiratorial in an effort to promote MS as some God-like Champion, as my comment seems to be to those in the dark.

        • Robbie (@robbie) said on 6th May 2013, 15:53

          Just wanted to add, in case you are going to come back to this topic, an answer as to why I think this skewing happened post-Senna. I think it is an undeniable fact that BE has always played a hand in shaping what F1 looks like. It’s his bat, his ball, his game. He is well documented to have had much influence on many occasions as to moving drivers into F1 onto certain teams, or moving one driver to another team, and helping new teams enter F1, throughout the years. So why it is so hard to imagine him having much to do with MS moving from a team he was winning at to a team that hadn’t won a WDC in 16 years at the time, is beyond me.

          As I see it, Senna was the last icon of his era, with the likes of Mansell, Prost, Herbert, Berger, Piquet gone, or pretty much about to be gone from F1 at the time of Senna’s death. The transition from the previous chapter of F1 containing said icons to the new chapter was to be a Senna/MS rivalry. But Senna tragically died, and along with him, any links to the previous era of F1. So I believe BE felt the need to orchestrate a new chapter in F1 since Senna was no longer there to help the new chapter form itself with a Senna/MS rivalry.

          And I didn’t pull my reasons for this theory out of a hat. It is a fact that the media were on BE, the FIA, and Benetton like pitbulls, wanting answers as to how MS could be allowed a WDC with such highly illegal cars, not to mention his whack on DH in 94. The kangaroo court that then took place within F1, under the guise of it being real court, to somehow exhonerate Benetton and MS from the big heat they were taking, combined with him then being moved from a team he was winning at to a team that wasn’t winning and hadn’t for 16 years, along with a mega deal including much of the Benetton crew that worked with MS, I think presents a compelling argument that this was orchestrated to create a new chapter in F1 post-Senna, since Senna was no longer there to help create it on it’s own, to set up F1’s newly crowned main icon with the task of ending Ferrari’s WDC drought.

        • anon said on 6th May 2013, 17:41

          “Fact. Nowhere did I say he didn’t have brilliant performances. My issue is the skewing toward him that allowed him the apples to oranges racing he enjoyed that helped him make his performances look brilliant.”

          The were brilliant. His record speaks for itself.

          “Fact. The Benettons had many illegalities and were banned from some races.”

          I will grant you that there were irregularities with the fuel pump. Nothing else proven, unlike cheating by Michelin, by Renault and McLaren. All proven. Senna spread malicious rumors because of sour grapes. Despite all this, Senna’s Williams was still superior to the Benetton.

          “Fact. MS was moved from Benetton where he was winning, to Ferrari where they weren’t, along with much of his crew from Benetton. Ask yourself why.”

          Because he wanted to be the guy to resurrect the most famous name is world motor-sport after going nearly two decades without a drivers championship. He could have stayed at Benetton and won championship after championship. Any other driver would have and it would have destroyed the sport.

          “Fact. MS’s teammates had contracts to be subservient. See RB’s comments post Austria 02 where he says, upon handing MS a win with metres to go, “I thought I should obey my contract.””

          His contract was to follow instructions. He was far behind Schumacher in the championship, so Ferrari made a sensible decision to allow Schumacher to maximize his lead in the championship. 1997-99 Ferrari missed out by nothing, and after a disastrous middle of 2000 where Schumacher retired in 4/5 races it looked like they were going to miss out again. They didn’t want to take anything for granted.

          People forget that Ferrari got Barrichello because they didn’t want a repeat of 99 where McLaren did everything they could to hand Irvine the championship in Schumacher’s absence. A better driver would have meant Ferrari won the championship in 99. They went after Barrichello because he was one of the hottest prospects on the grid. He was sometimes beating Irvine with the Stewart like in Brazil. In Australia he started in pitlane and got to 4th before his engine blew up. Lot of other performances like that.

          Schumacher blew him away and Barrichello got increasingly bitter.

          “Fact. Ferrari have admitted a one-rooster philosophy, and even recently it has been revealed, as it was back then, that Ferrari had veto power over the rules, not to mention getting upwards of 100mill per year, just because they are Ferrari, over and above what the other teams get.”

          One rooster policy only applies to Alonso and Massa. You’re also wrong because the FIA changed the rules in 2003 to stop a repeat of Ferrari’s dominance in 2002. Then when Ferrari dominated in 2004, the FIA changed the rules again. What are you talking about???

          “Fact. Denying any or all of these facts is just as conspiratorial in an effort to promote MS as some God-like Champion, as my comment seems to be to those in the dark.”

          He is the best of all time. Had 91 wins from 250 races was it? What has Alonso got? 31 from about 202? hahaha. Kimi has 20 from 181. Plus none of them voluntarily went to a basket case team in the prime of their career. Alonso ran off to Renault but that’s because he couldn’t beat a rookie in the same equipment.

  10. Tony Jolevski said on 5th May 2013, 1:48

    Proof that he is and always will be the best of all time.

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