BBC SPORT Arabic Spanish Russian Chinese
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX    SEARCH 

BBC Sport
 You are in: Motorsport: Formula One  
Sport Front Page
-------------------
Football
Cricket
Rugby Union
Rugby League
Tennis
Golf
Motorsport
Statistics
Formula One
World Rally
Motorbikes
Boxing
Athletics
Other Sports
-------------------
Special Events
-------------------
Sports Talk
-------------------
BBC Pundits
TV & Radio
Question of Sport
-------------------
Photo Galleries
Funny Old Game
-------------------
Around The UK: 
N Ireland
Scotland
Wales

BBC Sport Academy
BBC News
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
LANGUAGES
EDITIONS

  Friday, 27 September, 2002, 08:03 GMT 09:03 UK
Lauda makes Schumi admission
Rubens Barrichello and Michael Schumacher finished first and second in Monza
Ferrari one-twos have become a familiar sight
Three-times world champion Niki Lauda has said he would have walked away from Formula One if he had been as dominant in his day as Michael Schumacher is now.

The Austrian - champion in 1975, 1977 and 1984 - said at the American Grand Prix that he would have become "bored" if he was winning as many races as Schumacher.

"Winning all the time, I would have started to do something else with my life," he said.

Lauda walked away from F1 in the middle of the Canadian Grand Prix weekend in 1979 to concentrate on running an airline. He returned in 1982.


Talk about 'Formula yawn' is far too superficial
Michael Schumacher

But the Austrian, now the boss of the Jaguar F1 team, paid tribute to Schumacher's talents as the greatest driver he has seen in F1.

"He's really the best, as long as I can think of racing, by producing results and his consistency in always being better every year, he is by far the best from my point of view.

"Because nobody else could do this so far."

Earlier, Schumacher rejected claims that Ferrari's domination of F1 is ruining the sport.

Attendance at this weekend's US Grand Prix at Indianapolis is expected to fall well short of the 175,000 who watched last year's race.

Race organisers have blamed the recession and Schumacher's serene march to the drivers' title for the comparative lack of interest.

But Schumacher insists Ferrari's grip on the sport is not as tight as it seems, even though the Italian team have won 13 out of 15 races this season.

Niki Lauda
Lauda paid generous tribute to Schumacher's talents
"I know its fashionable to talk about 'Formula yawn' and about Ferrari ruining Formula One with all its wins," said Schumacher.

"I can only say that this view is far too superficial. The fact is that we have to fight for our victories.

"We can't just win whenever we please, just stroll through. I have not gone to a race once this season feeling confident of a win. And only that would be true dominance."

Schumacher and team-mate Rubens Barrichello have won the past eight races between them.

They have finished first and second on each of their previous three outings, including an overwhelming victory in front of their fans in Monza two weeks ago.

"I know it looked so easy again at the finish - two Ferraris at the front, with no competition and a long way ahead of the rest," said Schumacher.


We know our car is close to perfection on all types of track
Michael Schumacher

"An easy double victory. And all those who think that our supposed dominance is damaging the sport felt their opinion validated.

"I also felt validated, in my opinion that we would have had to fight very hard for this dream result if our competition at BMW-Williams hadn't run into problems so early.

"If the engine in Ralf [Schumacher's] car hadn't exploded and Juan Pablo Montoya had not had other problems then the Italian Grand Prix certainly would not have turned into such a dream race for us."

Schumacher, however, was forced to concede that Ferrari have a great chance of winning the final two races of the season in the USA and Japan.

That would see them equal McLaren's record of 15 wins, though Ferrari's rivals achieved the feat in a 16-race campaign.

"We have such a good car that of course it would be great if the last two races went in our favour," added Schumacher.

"I am not going to make predictions about Sunday's Grand Prix because a lot will depend on tyre performance.

"We know our car is close to perfection on all types of track and we will definitely be competitive, even though I cannot say to what degree."

In-depth guide to the 2002 Formula One season

Race statistics

On-track action

News

Jonathan Legard

F1 2002
Links to more Formula One stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Formula One stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

Sport Front Page | Football | Cricket | Rugby Union | Rugby League |
Tennis | Golf | Motorsport | Boxing | Athletics | Other Sports |
Special Events | Sports Talk | BBC Pundits | TV & Radio | Question of Sport |
Photo Galleries | Funny Old Game | N Ireland | Scotland | Wales