13 September 2006

The End of a Reich

The man devoid of facial hair. He of the big chin. The perfectionist. The champion of champions. The Rainmeister, Herr Kaiser, Michael Schumacher.

Schumi announced his retirement from Formula 1 after winning Ferrari's home GP. Three more races to the end of this season, and a reich, an era will come to end. This man debuted at Spa Francorchamps in 1991 as a replacement driver. His first race ended before he could drive a kilometer, thanks to a broken clutch. Benetton snapped him up and he gave them points from just his second race.

Controversy and Schumacher have been bedfellows. The 1994 incident where he rammed race leader Damon Hill in the title decider race to claim the championship by one point. He was also part of the darkest hour of Formula 1 at Austria in 2002 where 'team orders' were issued to his teammate Rubens Barrichello who was the race leader to step aside and let Schumacher win so as to give him extra points in the championship stakes.

But this man has also been part of some of the most memorable races. His maiden victory at a wet and slippery Belgium in 1992, on account of a brilliant tyre-change decision and another victory at Belgium in 1995 having started from 16th on the grid got him the title 'Rainmeister'. In 1998, at Hungaroring where overtaking is nigh impossible, he made history of sorts when he made three pitstops and covered 25 seconds in 19 laps to take victory.

He holds every record in Formula 1 and the following stats show the margin of his lead.

Most wins at one circuit
8 Michael Schumacher
6 Ayrton Senna, Juan Manuel Fangio

Maximum Pole Positions
68 Michael Schumacher
65 Ayrton Senna

Start to Finish (Pole and Victory)
40 Michael Schumacher
29 Ayrton Senna

Hat Tricks (Pole, Fastest Lap, Victory)
22 Michael Schumacher
11 Jim Clark

90 Michael Schumacher
51 Alain Prost

Podium Finishes
153 Michael Schumacher
106 Alain Prost
80 Ayrton Senna

Career Points
1354.00 Michael Schumacher
798.50 Alain Prost
614.00 Ayrton Senna

Prometheus never thought he would so admire the Kaiser. He adored Ayrton Senna. None but Ayrton Senna, arguably the best driver even today. Ayrton did his things without any of the gadgetry found on cars today. Prometheus hated Schumacher back then, as he hates Alonso now.

Prometheus was standing in for a tour manager, conducting a gaggle of 40 senior citizens vacationing in Nainital, a scenic mountain town in India and missed the only race in 3 years. Upon his return to Mumbai, he learnt that MTV had gone off air and Senna had died. In days past when safety wasn't paramount, Senna was entering a corner when his steering column came off. He hit a concrete wall at Tamburello at 190 kph, slowing down from nearly 300 kph. The G Force snapped his neck.

History is set to repeat itself when Prometheus, having missed every race this year, might miss Schumi's last race before he retires. Alonso leads by two points now and with 3 races to go, Prometheus is having a word with Zeus and other Olympians that Schumi wins this year's crown and makes a record 8 world championship titles.

Long live the Kaiser!


Lizza said...

Ooh, a Schumi fan. I do hope you get to see his last race. I remember watching news coverage of Senna's death many years ago. It made me feel sad. And not only because I like the name Ayrton.

terra shield said...

I remember Senna too from years ago... I suspect he (Schumacher)may win again.. it'll be rather odd if he didn't

Nothingman said...

hey mate are u settled in dubai or in india...cuz your location says india but your blog is listed under UAE in world of bloggers...


Prometheus said...

Prometheus is an expatriate. That is, he is Indian by citizenship but resides in the UAE. He wonders if he can be termed 'mate' since he isn't Australian, but likes the term nonetheless.

Mimi Lenox said...

I have no idea who these people are but your post makes me want to find out. I'll put it on my TO DO list. All I know is, if Lizza thinks they're important they must be! She is my definitive yardstick.
Be back later.......