Thursday, 24 December 2009

Schumacher Returns - It's Official

Mercedes Benz World - Brooklands

It has been a busy week for Mercedes F1...

Further to earlier speculation, on Wednesday 23rd December, the team officially announced that seven time F1 World Champion Michael Schumacher will race for them alongside fellow German Nico Rosberg in 2010.

Schumacher, ever confident, has already set his sights on an unprecedented eighth World title which he believes to be achievable despite his age and three year absence from the sport.

He is basing this assumption on the fact the Brawn GP (now Mercedes) Team produced the Championship winning car and driver in 2009.

As I have stated in this blog on a number of occasions, I believe that Brawn were afforded an early season advantage in 2009 over their rivals due to their clever interpretation of the technical rules regarding the use of a double diffuser.

By the time the other teams had modified their cars, Brawn had the Championship effectively sewn up.

It is highly unlikely, in my opinion, that the Brawn/Mercedes team will be afforded the same head start in 2010 and therefore it follows, that Schumacher will not have an open road to the Championship.

I do believe 2010 will be a very tight season with several teams and drivers in the hunt for Constructors and Drivers Championships.

Massa and Alonso at Ferrari will be fun to watch taking points from each other - and, I expect, squabbling throughout the season.

I have a good feeling about Hamilton at McLaren - provided the team can produce a decent car. I believe Button will struggle with a top class team mate coupled with an unfamilar car and team organisation.

If Red Bull can continue to develop their car, Vettel will definitely be another Championship contender. I would like to include Mark Webber in the list of possible Champions but fear he will continue to be dogged with the bad luck that has plagued his career to date.

In addition to the news of Michael Schumacher's impending return to F1, Mercedes have also signed a title sponsorship agreement with Malaysian oil giant Petronas, much to the chagrin of Lotus F1 who had hoped to do the deal themselves.

My friend Himmat Singh in Malaysia has written an interesting post on his blog from a local perspective about the Petronas/Mercedes link up and it's implications for Lotus.

If you'd like to read it, please click here.

How do you think Michael Schumacher will fair in 2010? Will he still be competitive or just make up the numbers?

Why not leave a comment? They are always very welcome.

Saturday, 19 December 2009

Michael Schumacher Back to F1 in 2010?

Picture by Schumigirl1956

Rumours are rife that seven time F1 World Champion Michael Schumacher will be lured back to Formula 1 next season behind the wheel of a Mercedes following a sabbatical as "advisor" to Ferrari (and mentor to Felipe Massa).

Dear old Bernie Ecclestone's little piggy eyes have lit up already at the thought of the extra cash that would be generated.

He has already been reported in the media extolling the virtues of a Schumacher return to F1 action.

Ferrari boss di Montezemelo has stated that they would not stand in the way of a Schumacher return with rivals Mercedes and that his return would be a good thing for Formula 1 in general.

Whether it will actually happen remains to be seen. After all we have been in this position before a few months ago...

When Felipe Massa was injured at the Hungarian GP, Schumacher was lined up to replace him for the remainder of the season.

However, due to a neck injury he had to abandon the plan and there then followed the sorry debacle of Luca Badoer and Fisi - surely one of Ferrari's most embarassing seasons ever.

So what do I think (assuming it actually happens)?

I have to say that I am not one of Michael Schumacher's biggest fans.

He is undisputedly highly skilled behind the wheel and can read a race tactically much better than many of his rivals.

However, in my opinion he has a crossed the line on too many occasions as to what I would deem to be appropriate behaviour on the track.....

OK, maybe I'm being too polite here - I mean he has a propensity to cheat when things aren't going his way!

Having said that, the prospect of the current World Champion Button competing with no less than three former World Champions (Hamilton, Alonso and of course Schumacher) could make for an entertaining season.

For Mercedes, pairing up Schumacher with a fellow German driver Rosberg, in a German car with a German engine, would be a marketing dream.

It would be interesting to see how Schumacher would fair in the Mercedes after a long absense from F1 and without the familiar Ferrari team around him.....

If you have found this post interesting, please feel free to leave a comment!

You may also like the following posts......

2010 Formula 1 Teams and Drivers

Fisichella's Ferrari Swansong

Ferrari - Face Facts - You Can't Polish a Turd!!

Saturday, 5 December 2009

2010 Formula 1 Teams and Drivers

Here are some thoughts on the 2010 F1 teams and drivers that have been announced so far...


2009 Champion Jenson Button has signed for McLaren and will race alongside Lewis Hamilton the 2008 Champion.

I have a feeling he may well rue this decision come the end of the season.

At Brawn he was undisputed top dog but won't have this luxury at McLaren where Hamilton has (literally) grown up with the team.

In my opinion Button's weaknesses will become plain to see when up against Hamilton in the same car. If Brawn had not had the headstart over the other teams this year due to their clever interpretation of the technical rules, Button would not have become Champion.

Unfortunately for Button, if it does not work out at McLaren he has burnt his bridges with Ross Brawn and Nick Fry having left on less than amicable terms. Button seems to have a knack of doing this , another example being the situation with Frank Williams a few years back.


I am looking forward to seeing Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa spending the whol;e season squabbling!

Ferrari may regret taking on Alonso if they end up with a similar situation to the one McLaren found themselves in when he was paired up with Lewis Hamilton.


The Brawn team will be rebranded Mercedes next year. So far they have announced only Nico Rosberg on their 2010 driver roster. He should do a solid job and could even possibly win his first GP if the car is up to scratch.

The second driver slot could go to Heidfeld making an all German line up. He is a consistant points scorer but will never set the world alight.


Peter Sauber has managed to do a deal to salvage the remains of the BMW team and has been granted a 2010 grid slot. This is welcome news.

No drivers have been announced so far.


Williams have an interesting line up. Veteran Rubens Barrichello is paired up with German youngster Nico Hulkenberg. Whilst many were happy to write off Barrichello, Frank Williams obviously still sees potential. It is rumoured he is getting $ 6 million for the season!

I have seen Hulkenberg racing in A1Gp at Brands Hatch and he was the class of the field.

Obviously it is a big step from A1Gp to F1 but I think he will be exciting to watch if the Williams car is on the pace.

Red Bull

Red Bull retain the same driver line in 2010 - Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel. If the car is on the pace in 2010, Vettel must be a serious contender for the Championship.

McLaren will have Hamilton and Button taking points from each other and Ferrari will have the egos of Alonso and Massa to control.


One of the newcomers to the grid in 2010. No drivers have been announced so far. I can't help feeling this team will be a flash in the pan. Maybe one season in F1 at the most before they gently fade away. I don't believe there is any real enthusiasm or appetite for F1 in the USA especially as there isn't even a US Grand Prix anymore.


Another of the new teams. They have signed the late Ayrton Senna's nephew Bruno. The famous surname will no doubt be a good selling point with their sponsors but may not necessarily bring track success!


Newcomers Manor have paired up with Virgin and signed Toyota refugee Timo Glock as their lead driver. He should do a solid job.


Renault have signed Robert Kubica although I have severe doubts that they will make it to the grid at all in 2010. Renault are actively looking to exit F1 and are said to be in negotiations with potential buyers. A decision should be made by the end of this month.


The last of the new teams. have not announced any drivers yet although there is a good chance that Jarno Trulli will find his way there.

Force India

Force India have retained Adrian Sutil and Tonio Liuzzi. I am hoping that they will continue to progress during 2010 although this could be difficult with the added competiton from the new teams.

Toro Rosso

Toro Rosso have confirmed Sebastian Buemi and are expected to retain Jaime Alguersuari. It will be interesting to see if both drivers are still with the team at the end of the 2010 season. There are a lot of young drivers in the Red Bull pool waiting in the wings to take their place...

Other posts you may like....

FIA Announce New Teams for 2010

Singapore Race Fix

BMW Pulls out of F1