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Archive for the ‘Formula1’ Category

Michael Schumacher- Conqueror of the World???

Posted by Sports Snob on November 3, 2006

Schumacher… What the hell does that name mean? To any Formula1 fan, it means passion, excellence and most of all a burning and all-consuming desire to win.

In 1991, he drove his first race for Jordan, miraculously taking a pathetic car to seventh position on the grid; everyone on the grid immediately took notice. Over 250 grand prix, 91 victories, 68 pole positions and 7 world championships later he’s firmly stamped himself into the record books and our memories. His driving is perfection itself- he makes precious few mistakes; he’s supremely fit, technically astute and tactically brilliant but that isn’t what makes ‘Schumi’ who he is… It’s the man behind the driver who made him the success he is today.

Joining Ferrari, a team which hadn’t produced a world champion since 1979, he gelled them into a cohesive unit, leading them by example with a singular enthusiasm for the sport, a raging competitive spirit and exemplary work ethic (Williams’ bosses once lamented that Ralf Schumacher and Juan Montoya didn’t show Schumi’s enthusiasm for work. Michael, reportedly, used to call his technical director at three in the morning to discuss adjustments to his car.) all of which has made him a demi-god at Maranello. No champion is without his detractors and Schumi has his share, like those that believe Lance Armstrong took performance enhancing drugs and think that Pete Sampras was unexciting. For them, I have a story to tell – Eddie Jordan is fond of recollecting how before he gave Schumacher his first drive, he had asked him if he had driven around the Spa circuit to which Schumi promptly replied that he had, conveniently leaving out the fact that he had done so on his bike…. Jordan, of course, has no regrets considering the qualifying performance that he managed that weekend but that’s classic Schumacher. He may bend the rules a little, but he gets the job done…

Schumacher has driven us through sixteen years of unforgettable moments- the duels with Senna, Prost, Mansell and later Hakkinen, Villeneuve and Alonso, the many last minute blitz to pole position, the tears after equaling Senna’s number of race victories and more shocking ones like ramming into Villeneuve in 1997 but the picture of him that will always always remain in my memory, is him taking his victory leap on the podium, jumping onto Ross Brawn afterward and reveling in the champagne showers. The look on his face, reflecting all the joy in the world, is inspiring. Flawed genius though he maybe, that desire to win makes him an unequalled champion….

– Ranjani Murali, Guest Writer

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A long due post on Schumi. The writers have been fairly busy and hence the drop in frequency of posts. Hopefully, this situation will be amended in the near future.

Hope you enjoyed the post… let us know what you think.

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Formula 1: The season so far

Posted by Sports Snob on August 25, 2006

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Four Five races left in the calendar year and only eleven points (when the post was written, now ten) separate the leader(Fernando Alonso) and number two(Michael Schumacher) in the World Drivers Championship. Now that’s the sort of Formula One season that brings back the fans that abandoned the sport during the years of Michael Schumacher’s absolute domination. The reliability of Alonso and Renault pitted against a Ferrari resurgence and Michael Schumacher’s desperate need to win.

Two Horse Race:

The season began well in Bahrain with a tight finish for the first spot between Alonso and Michael after which Ferrari slipped in Malaysia and Australia. Thereafter it turned into a two-horse race as the two of them together won eleven of the thirteen races; Fisichella, in a rare drive surpassing his team mate in Malaysia and Button, winning for the first time on a wet track in Hungary, were the other two victors. In the other Ferrari car, Massa did a good job of helping Schumi along the way, taking valuable points off Alonso in a couple of races and managing (sometimes) to keep pace with his illustrious team mate. Fisichella, on the other hand, seemed largely uninterested in the ongoing season but for the one brilliant race in Malaysia and all the points he acquired can be attributed to Renault’s unfailing car -a sad declaration to make about a prodigiously talented driver who everyone expected would achieve much once he got an opportunity to handle a decent car.

Mclaren and Montoya

Mclaren were unchallenged as the third best car on track with Raikkonen occasionally beating his rotten luck and scoring some points. With Mclaren already having contracted Alonso for 2007, Montoya looked ready to quit F1 at the start of the season and most of his drives spoke of the same intent, until he finally did chose to leave F1 for NASCAR after causing a seven car pile-up at Indy- a “fitting” end to one of the more “exciting” drivers in the past few F1 seasons (read hasty dingus who too often pushed his car too far). In all seriousness, Montoya was one of the only things tolerable about F1 in the afore-mentioned Michael dominated years. He was not very consistent, but he fought hard and for every F1 fan, there will be many a brilliant Montoya maneuver, imprinted in your head forever.

Honda led the midfield pack, with a few good drives from Button and points from the practically invisible Barrichello, followed by BMW-Sauber and Toyota.

Bitter Jacques:

As always, F1 offers as much controversy and transfers as on track brilliance and this season was no different, with Toyota suddenly dropping sought after technical director, Mike Gascoyne, and Geoff Willis parting ways with Honda. Once again, Michael was universally berated for his disregard for rules and sportsmanship as he stalled in front of Alonso during Fernando’s final qualifying run at Monaco. He protested innocence of course but no one was really willing to believe him anymore and so he started from the pits, finishing fifth with a typically competent drive aided by a little luck. And of course, the latest of Jacques Villeneuve’s verbal attacks on Michael (there’s one every five minutes) – “He’s a racer – but a pure racer, nothing but a racer and, because of that, I think the day he hangs up his helmet people will just forget him.” Oh, and Schumi’s not a great human being and Senna played dirty tricks with greater style and will hence be remembered better than him. Really, Jacques! Even you ought to know that just sounds bitter. The man who won five continuous seasons, who battled the likes of Senna, Prost and Mansell to win his first world driver’s championship, who’s beaten Mika Hakkinen, who’s broken practically every record in the F1 books is NOT going to be forgotten. Jacques Villeneuve, proving once again that his prodigious talent deserves a better behaved vessel.

Predictions! :

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With a close fight at the top, both in the drivers and construction titles, numerous verbal battles, and even Michael, Kimi and Massa undecided as to where they’re driving next year (In Michael’s case, if…), everyone should do their best to catch the remaining of the season. Alonso will no doubt give it his best shot but I expect Michael and Ferrari to emerge triumphant, simply because their car has looked better since France, and also because Michael, though the oldest on the track, still remains the man with the greatest will to win…

– MR

(Guest Writer)

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PS: MR is a good friend of ours. She is an engineering student in Chennai, who loves sports. She might be posting more regularly henceforth.


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