When Michael Schumacher retired at the end of the 2006 season, I knew I was not going to be watching much Formula One. I haven’t watched a single race since then and was not quite sure who won the Drivers or Constructers Championships in the following years. I never really expected Schumi to come back unless something drastic happened and even then I was doubtful.
Well, on Saturday evening, I was flipping channels when I stumbled upon news that Ferrari driver, Filipe Massa, had been hit by flying debris during qualifying and was badly injured. Later, three time Formula One Champion Niki Lauda offered hope of Schumacher’s return by saying that Schumee was the best possible option for Ferrari. Well, I was not so sure Schumi would reciprocate, but, now that it’s happened, I can’t wait to watch the European Grand Prix at Valencia on the 23rd of August. Here are some quotes -
Michael Schumacher, “It is true that the Formula One chapter has long been closed for me but for team loyalty reasons I can't ignore this unfortunate situation…As the competitor I am, I also very much look forward to facing this challenge.”
Niki Lauda, the 60 year old Austrian Formula One driver who came out of a five year retirement to win the Drivers Championship in 1984, said, “He will be the saviour of Formula One after what we've gone through this year with all the politics… Michael is aware of the dangers…He is a clever guy and a grown-up man…He would not return unless he felt he was fit and felt he could make an impact on the track”.
Lewis Hamilton, 2008 World Champion said, “Michael is a legend in his own right and it would be great to compete against him… I was once asked which former driver I would most like to drive against and I went for Michael. I don't agree with all his controversial moves but as a competitor there's nobody better.”
Jenson Button, the leader of the current Driver’s Championship, said “He won't be getting into the car in Valencia thinking 'Oh God, I hope Felipe comes back soon'…It will take a bit of the limelight away from us at the front, and maybe that's a good thing because we can get on with it and fight it out”.
Kimi Raikkonen, 2007 World Champion and Ferrari teammate, said “If it really happens I will be happy to partner him, even though it may not have much effect on my own performance”.
Schumacher’s return is also expected to boost the business aspect of Formula One. More Formula One tickets will be sold, television ratings are expected to soar and merchandise sales will increase. Even I am thinking of going abroad for a Formula One race. I have always wished to see Michael Schumacher race, but hadn’t enough cash saved up at the time. Well, now that Schumee is returning to F1, I have a second chance at fulfilling my desire.
Well, I wish Schumi all the best for his return to Formula One. He should easily pass the fitness examination. I will surely be watching the races from now on. I hope he does well and does not injure himself. The contest between Michael Schumacher and Lewis Hamilton is sure to be interesting. I am expecting Schumee to get a few podiums or maybe win a few races. Let’s see how he takes to the new Ferrari car…
What do you have to say about Michael Schumacher’s return to Formula One?