Ross Brawn reckons Michael Schumacher is the driver of the century

Mercedes boss Ross Brawn says Michael Schumacher deserves the label as 'driver of the century' - even though his comeback did not achieve the high targets that were set

Ross Brawn reckons Michael Schumacher is the driver of the century

Schumacher returned to F1 in 2010 hoping to be gunning for championship glory, but in three campaigns he has so far been fastest in qualifying once and only delivered a single podium finish.

Nevertheless, Brawn believes that Schumacher's contribution to the team and the sport should not be underestimated.

"I think he is the greatest racing driver of this century," explained Brawn at the press conference where Schumacher announced his retirement.

"I was very privileged to work with Michael from the very beginning and obviously we had some fantastic times, tough times too, but also very successful times.

"I think Michael brought a lot to the team in this second period that people don't see. There was a huge contribution behind the scenes.

"We have not achieved what we wanted to achieve together, and that is frustrating, but I think what we do achieve in the future, Michael will have made a contribution to it. So for me personally, [that is why] he is the greatest racing driver of this century."

Mercedes-Benz motorsport boss Norbert Haug was also full of praise for the way Schumacher had applied himself to the job - even though success was hard to achieve.

"He gave it everything. He never complained, and he was a constructive guy," said Haug. "I learned from this 'new' Michael in his second career even more than in the first, because he was successful and we were friends and we are friends."

Brawn said that Mercedes did discuss future plans with Schumacher - but in the end it was unable to reach an agreement because of issues over the potential length of the deal.

"Michael was well aware and kept informed, and we discussed our options with him," explained Brawn. "Michael was considering the situation, and you have to remember that if there was an agreement reached it wouldn't just be for one year, we needed a longer agreement than that.

"So it evolved as a mutual decision. It suited everyone to make the decision that we did but, of course, Lewis took some time before he made his mind up on what he wanted to do. There were no conflicts or decisions in the process, it evolved very smoothly.

"Michael kept us aware, kept me very aware of his feelings and his thoughts, and we discussed the way that decisions were going, or discussions were going, and I think the important thing for the team is someone of the calibre of Lewis does not become available every day. That was an important factor that came into it."

shares
comments
I had options to stay in F1, says Michael Schumacher

Previous article

I had options to stay in F1, says Michael Schumacher

Next article

Japanese Grand Prix: Thursday's press conference

Japanese Grand Prix: Thursday's press conference
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Michael Schumacher
Teams Brawn GP
Author Jonathan Noble
Why Russell was right to be wrong about Bottas after Imola F1 clash Plus

Why Russell was right to be wrong about Bottas after Imola F1 clash

George Russell and Valtteri Bottas' collision at Imola on Sunday prompted fury in the Formula 1 paddock. But Russell's carefully-worded heartfelt statement later, acknowledging that his initial response was wrong, proved the right move

Formula 1
Apr 22, 2021
How Verstappen and Hamilton’s Imola clash sets the tone for F1’s 2021 title fight Plus

How Verstappen and Hamilton’s Imola clash sets the tone for F1’s 2021 title fight

In Max Verstappen's Formula 1 career to date, he has been cast as the 'pretender', an acknowledged top-line performer without the car to regularly challenge Lewis Hamilton. But that no longer applies in 2021, and the start to the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix was the most telling signal yet of what we can expect from their duel this year

Formula 1
Apr 21, 2021
How “overwhelming” McLaren move has given Ricciardo a new verve Plus

How “overwhelming” McLaren move has given Ricciardo a new verve

Daniel Ricciardo has found a new lease of life at McLaren – a move that’s been years in the making, as he explains to STUART CODLING…

Formula 1
Apr 20, 2021
The German legend who raced and beat Nuvolari Plus

The German legend who raced and beat Nuvolari

Ninety years ago, Rudolf Caracciola became the first non-Italian to win the epic Mille Miglia. We look at how he stacks up to the most famous pre-war ace Tazio Nuvolari, one of the drivers he beat on that day in 1931

Formula 1
Apr 20, 2021
How 2021's midfielders have taken lessons from F1's top teams Plus

How 2021's midfielders have taken lessons from F1's top teams

Formula 1’s latest Imola adventure turned into an expensive trip for many teams due to several crashes throughout the weekend. While balancing the books is an added factor in 2021 with the cost cap, a few midfield teams have cashed in early on development investments

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
Emilia Romagna Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Emilia Romagna Grand Prix Driver Ratings

A frantic wet race at Imola produced plenty of excitement and drama as drivers scrabbled for grip. Amid the hatful of mistakes and incidents that ensued, who kept their noses cleanest?

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
How the Emilia Romagna GP result hinged on three crucial saves Plus

How the Emilia Romagna GP result hinged on three crucial saves

Rain before the start of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix promised to spice up the action, and the race certainly delivered on that. Max Verstappen got the best launch to win from Lewis Hamilton, but both got away with mistakes that could have had serious consequences

Formula 1
Apr 19, 2021
The back-bedroom world-beater that began a new F1 era Plus

The back-bedroom world-beater that began a new F1 era

The first in a line of world beaters was designed in a back bedroom and then constructed in a shed. STUART CODLING recalls the Tyrrell 001

Formula 1
Apr 18, 2021