I think part of Schumachers reason for moving to Ferrari is because they are viewed by many as THE team to drive for. However with Schumacher being German, maybe his heart lies with Mercedes, and also driving for their sports car team. However Mercedes didn’t really have a strong team to drive for, the Sauber team weren’t the greatest with their engine, and McLaren struggled at first with the engine also.
I think you can see that Schumacher likes to obviously be the number one in the team. He possibly saw that Ferrari were in need of a leader and Schumacher was the man for the job. You can tell that he likes to be in control and for the team to follow his every move and to agree with him. You can see this in his relationship with Bridgestone and how they made tyres to suit his driving style.
Money is obviously going to be a factor in any move. He wasn’t going to move to Ferrari without a nice pay cheque, and Ferrari are probably the best suited for providing this.
I’d like to wonder what would have happened if Schumacher hadn’t moved to Ferrari, they had pretty dire cars in the mid 90s, and Schumacher made them look a whole lot better, as did the team of people who moved from Benneton with him. Ferrari could have still been in a rut, imagine that!
As for building a team from the ground up, I think a lot of drivers like that challenge. We’ve seen this with Alonso at Renault, ok not in the same way as Schumacher, but he definitely helped make the team what they were in 2005 and 2006. We’ve also seen Hakkinen do this with McLaren, they weren’t the great team they were in the late 80′s and early 90s when he joined. He helped to build the team to their double success in 98 and 99.
I think a lot of drivers try and do this. Just look at Kovalainen and Trulli, they moved to Lotus, yes they didn’t really have much of a choice, one replaced by Button, and the other his team dropped out. But they both decided to stay in F1 to try and build a team from the bottom up, and I hope they succeed.
Good idea for a post sw6569!