Schumacher: Mercedes closing on rivals

Michael Schumacher is not expecting any changes to the running order at the Chinese Grand Prix, but he reckons his Mercedes GP team is getting closer to some of its rivals

Schumacher: Mercedes closing on rivals

"Not really," said Schumacher when asked if he was expecting changes to the pecking order in China.

"Obviously the weather will have a big impact, like in Malaysia. I think the ranking stays as it was before. We have made slight improvements with the car, but nothing major."

He added: "We are improving steadily. We are in the situation where you have Red Bull, Ferrari fighting out front, then you have McLaren, us and Renault in a group just behind that.

"We seem to have got closer to some of the guys in front, but we have to prove that on Sunday."

Schumacher finished a promising fourth quickest in second practice on Friday, nearly four tenths of a second off Lewis Hamilton's pace.

The German admitted McLaren's top speed, aided by the use of its F-duct, was a boost for the British squad in Shanghai.

"It's naturally helpful to have the speed they have, but it's only good for the ones who have them," he said. "I think the only reason why I was as quick is because I had a very good tow ahead of me. Otherwise we are certainly slower down the straight."

And the seven-time champion claimed his practice had been better than expected after his promising times.

"It's actually been better than I expected it to be, especially with fuel. The handling was pretty much okay."

shares
comments
Hamilton keeps McLaren on top in China
Previous article

Hamilton keeps McLaren on top in China

Next article

China Friday quotes: Toro Rosso

China Friday quotes: Toro Rosso
Load comments
The downside to F1's show and tell proposal Plus

The downside to F1's show and tell proposal

Technology lies at the heart of the F1 story and it fascinates fans, which is why the commercial rights holder plans to compel teams to show more of their ‘secrets’. STUART CODLING fears this will encourage techno-quackery…

How getting sacked gave Mercedes F1’s tech wizard lasting benefits Plus

How getting sacked gave Mercedes F1’s tech wizard lasting benefits

He’s had a hand in world championship-winning Formula 1 cars for Benetton, Renault and Mercedes, and was also a cog in the Schumacher-Ferrari axis. Having recently ‘moved upstairs’ as Mercedes chief technical officer, James Allison tells STUART CODLING about his career path and why being axed by Benetton was one of the best things that ever happened to him

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2021
The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback Plus

The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback

It’s easy to look at
 Robert Kubica’s second Formula 1 career and feel a sense of sadness that he didn’t reach the heights for which he seemed destined. But as BEN ANDERSON discovered, performance and results are almost meaningless in this context – something more fundamental and incredible happened…

Formula 1
Nov 27, 2021
The humbling changes Ricciardo made to deliver the goods for McLaren  Plus

The humbling changes Ricciardo made to deliver the goods for McLaren 

From being lapped by his own team-mate in Monaco to winning at Monza, it’s been a tumultuous first season at McLaren for Daniel Ricciardo. But, as he tells STUART CODLING, there’s more to the story of his turnaround than having a lovely summer holiday during Formula 1's summer break...

Formula 1
Nov 26, 2021
The potential benefits of losing the F1 constructors' title Plus

The potential benefits of losing the F1 constructors' title

As the battle continues to rage over the F1 2021 drivers' championship, teams up and down the grid are turning their attentions to the prize money attributed to each position in the constructors' standings. But F1's sliding scale rules governing windtunnel and CFD use will soften the blow for those who miss out on the top places

Formula 1
Nov 25, 2021
The invisible enemy that’s made Hamilton’s title charge tougher Plus

The invisible enemy that’s made Hamilton’s title charge tougher

After winning his past few Formula 1 titles at a canter, Lewis Hamilton currently trails Max Verstappen by eight points heading into the final double-header of 2021. Although Red Bull has been his biggest on-track challenge, Hamilton feels that he has just as much to grapple with away from the circuit

Formula 1
Nov 24, 2021
Why F1’s inconvenient penalties have to stay Plus

Why F1’s inconvenient penalties have to stay

OPINION: Quibbles over the length of time taken by Formula 1's stewards over decisions are entirely valid. But however inconvenient it is, there can be no questioning the importance of having clearly defined rules that everyone understands and can stick to. Recent events have shown that ambiguity could have big consequences

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2021
The mistakes Red Bull cannot afford to repeat in F1 2021’s title fight climax Plus

The mistakes Red Bull cannot afford to repeat in F1 2021’s title fight climax

OPINION: Red Bull has had Formula 1’s fastest package for most of 2021, but in several of the title run-in events it has wasted the RB16B’s potential. It cannot afford to do so again with Lewis Hamilton motoring back towards Max Verstappen in the drivers’ standings with two rounds remaining

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2021