F1 : Schumacher – The Final Days
It quickly dawned on me this morning that the final few races left in this year’s Formula One season will be the last ever for Michael Schumacher. Since announcing his retirement (for the second time), he has publicly said now that he will not be racing further in any other Motorsport.
The first time the seven time world champion retired, one got the feeling that it wasn’t the last we’d see of him. I, for one, believed he’d find another series to fart about in. I had hoped that he might have made his way to DTM to re-ignite a spark and battle with Mika Hakkinen. Perhaps it was just wishful thinking.
Once he announced his intention to return to Formula One, I had visions of the Schumi of old fighting to improve his Mercedes and bringing it back to its former glory days. I believed he might be able to fight for race wins and championships again with his old mate Ross Brawn with which he found so much success.
Upon his return however, many of his fans found it frustrating to watch the man who once ruled and dominated the sport, being upstaged by his relatively inexperienced team-mate.
The last three years have been a struggle for Schumacher, his fans and his team. They’ve recorded one win since their return as a works team and it came at the hands of Nico Rosberg.
Schumacher’s place in F1 history is undeniable. Whether or not you rate him as one of the greatest ever or not is purely a personal choice. Some consider him unsportsmanlike, controversial, a cheat and others question some of his championships because of potentially illegal equipment. For some however, he will be remembered as simply the best.
The truth remains that he did win seven F1 crowns, which arguably could have been more, if not for certain incidents and misfortunes. It can be argued that none of the sport’s true greats were without fault at some point. Each had moments of weakness, questionable behavior, ruthlessness and/or misplaced aggression. While it is impossible to truly compare champions from different eras, Schumacher can be considered a legend of his day.
Deep down, I know it is time for the German to hang up his helmet now. A part of me will be sad to see him go while another part of me knows he should never have returned.
Love him or hate him, he will soon be gone. These, are for all intents and purposes…are the final days.
Author: Ernie Black