Michael Schumacher vs Fernando Alonso

Champion of Champions

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“The most dangerous champion for me is always Michael”, said Fernando Alonso last week.

But does Alonso have the measure of the man he beat to the 2006 world championship?

Alonso has acted as Schumacher’s successor more than once in his career. He took the Renault team (previously Benetton) back to championship glory ten years after Schumacher won his last title for them.

Today he is in a similar role at Ferrari, picking up where Kimi Raikkonen left off as Schumacher’s successor.

The statistics make it clear how much work Alonso has to do to emulate Schumacher’s success at Ferrari. He doesn’t have the ‘dream team’ of Jean Todt, Ross Brawn and Paolo Martinelli behind him – but time is on his side.

Schumacher, meanwhile, had a troubled comeback season with Mercedes after three years out of the cockpit.

Both these drivers are still racing and adding to their records. But which should go through to the next round of the Champion of Champions?

Vote for which you think was best below and explain who you voted for and why in the comments.

Michael SchumacherFernando Alonso
Titles1994, 1995, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 20042005, 2006
Second in title year/sDamon Hill, Damon Hill, Mika Hakkinen, David Coulthard, Rubens Barrichello, Kimi Raikkonen, Rubens BarrichelloKimi Raikkonen, Michael Schumacher
TeamsJordan, Benetton, Ferrari, MercedesMinardi, Renault, McLaren, Ferrari
Notable team matesNelson Piquet, Eddie Irvine, Rubens BarrichelloGiancarlo Fisichella, Lewis Hamilton, Felipe Massa
Wins91 (33.96%)26 (16.46%)
Poles68 (25.37%)20 (12.66%)
Modern points per start114.0510.58
% car failures28.2110.76
Modern points per finish315.3011.86
NotesMissed several races in 1999 after breaking his leg at SilverstoneDebuted for Minardi in 2001 then spent a year testing for Renault before making race return
Retired in 2006 after 11 seasons with FerrariBack-to-back titles for Renault in 2005 and 2006
Returned with Mercedes in 2010Formerly the youngest ever world champion
BioMichael SchumacherFernando Alonso

1 How many points they scored in their career, adjusted to the 2010 points system, divided by the number of races they started
2 The percentage of races in which they were not classified due to a mechanical failure
3 How many points they scored in their career, adjusted to the 2010 points system, divided by the number of starts in which they did not suffer a race-ending mechanical failure

Round one

Which was the better world champion driver?

  • Fernando Alonso (23%)
  • Michael Schumacher (77%)

Total Voters: 777

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Images © Renault/LAT (thumbnail, Alonso), Mercedes (Schumacher)

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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199 comments on “Michael Schumacher vs Fernando Alonso”

  1. Pepole always say that Michael was number 1 driver and the 2 one was only a pupet. But check this out http://www.f1talks.pl/wp-content/uploads/fernandofelipewroom-480×328.jpg

    1. Once again, Alonso rides Massa to victory …

      1. There must be another one of Schumacher taking Barrichello into a snow bank.

        1. no, that was the hungarian pitwall.

          1. It’s Schumi 110%. Alonso is good but he is being compared to the Best of all best.

    2. Haha wow. It reminds me of that brilliant caricature/cartoon that was posted on F1 fanatic sometime last year, of the five title contenders and Alonso being carried by massa! Anyway, I am very surprised they did that, surely its just inviting attacks from all sides! I bet it was Alonso’s idea. Smedley: ‘Alonso needs to be faster down the mountain and humiliate you at the same time. Do you understand this message!’

      Then again…it does look like massa is having more fun. so. who knows.

      1. “Smedley: ‘Alonso needs to be faster down the mountain and humiliate you at the same time. Do you understand this message!”


      2. Theres a spectacular photoshopped version of that cartoon that came up after the Wroom event:


        1. Haha, Saved.

          That is a great picture. :D

    3. lol!! thats a priceless photo…
      i saw two pictures where both were seperate in these same positions and this picture reflects my exact thoughts at that time…
      hope alonso does not ride massa in a similar vein in 2011…

    4. What a…lol!

    5. That would make a good caption competition

    6. “Fillipe, Fernando’s car is broken, Please confirm you understood that message!”

    7. MSC got my vote. Alonso is same level as Bruno Senna and Chandrok if they have the right car..

  2. Hard stuff!!!
    Michael is still over…Alonso has time enough to reach him, even if he already lost a pair of great opportunities.

    1. Fast Fred and the Kaiser sure had some big battles in the past ….
      but I think that FF will stop when he reaches 5 WDC. That is historically a good number

  3. I have to vote for Michael. As much as I disliked him in his previous incarnation (before he came back) he has given us F1 fans a lot of things to complain about and praise about him.

    He was fast and had a great team and provided many controversial moments.

    Alonso is good but MS is/was better.

    1. I ended up voting for Alonso mostly because he was the man that beat Schumacher, and put and end to his domination. But that statistic, of 91 race wins, from Schumacher, is incredible. he may have had the best car, on the superior tyres, and a team concentrating on only him winning; but even so that is incredible.

      1. Alonso beat Schumacher, Schumacher didn’t beat Alonso. Schumacher started to win his 5 titles with Ferrari at half of his career, so it’s early to say Alonso won’t manage the same. Alonso has just joined Ferrari and nearly won the title, Schumacher lost it in 1997 and 1998 at the end, so they are very similar. Both had won two titles before joining Ferrari and had beaten great opponents.
        This is my working out to decide who to vote for… I always liked Schumacher, but since Alonso came in Ferrari I’ve supported him…
        Schumacher. He is at the moment, in terms of statistics, the better driver. Once both will have retired, then we will be able to judge them better,

        1. Sorry Mate, but Alonso was lucky in 2006….do you remember GP Japan? Schumacher beat Alnoso in 2004 for example!

          Generally Schumacher can be compared only with Senna, Clark or Fangio. Alonso is far away from this level! Just like he is far from loyal worker. That is important part of being profesional!

          1. Ferrari were incredibly fortunate to have such a second-half run to the championship, considering the FIA’s interference in the R26 and Bridgestone’s come to form.

            Not to mention Monza, Shanghai, Indianapolis, Hockenheim.

          2. Ferrari weren’t fortunate, they lobbied with the FIA to have the WMSC protest the FIA’s own stewards!

            Ferrari got the FIA to ban Renault’s damper as an illegaly moving aerodynamic device.

          3. Do you remember Monza? Alonso also got his engine blown. A championship is made of all the races, in the end, who wins deserve it. To be honest Alonso would stand the comparison against most of the championship winners, I understand that the tally of schumacher is incredible, but he still has some years to prove what he is up to

    2. Its Hammer Time
      17th January 2011, 20:30

      Deciding between these two for me is like deciding the best evil cartoon Villan:

      The Hood from Thunderbirds, or Lex Luthor?

      Which did you hate/ get scared by the least :-)

  4. The quality of the opposition, not being in the ‘best team’, his skill and guile, beating Schumacher at Ferrari to win his 2 titles and the potential to win more… my vote goes to Alonso.

    1. Schumacher never jumped into the best team or car. He worked to ensure that the team could eliminate previous mistakes and become the best. Alonso is similar in that vein, but hasn’t dominated F1 in the same vein as Schumacher.

      MSC gets my vote.

    2. “the quality of the opposition”? Come on… This way you take all the credit from guys like Schumacher, Fangio, Tiger Woods, Michael Jordan, Pelé, Ronaldo, Federer and all the greatest champions…
      If there was no Schumacher, we would have Hakkinen, Raikkonen, ALonso, Montoya and other with 2, 3 championships and we would be saying “what amazing drivers they were”
      Since 2007, several different champions… Think about it.

      1. Good piont

      2. Exactly. It’s not like the quality of the grid suddenly improved in 2007. Correct me if I’m wrong, but of the 2007 rookies only Hamilton and Kovalainen are still in F1.

        1. We had Alonso in a midfield Renault and Brawn having a double diffuser.

  5. totally MS

  6. I think I voted for the wrong person! Damn, I don’t know who I should have voted for. I dislike both of them equally, but admire them equally!

    Ahh well

    1. Snap! I really dont like either of them. They have both cheated in the most blatant manner (and I am not thinking team orders) to win. But they are also undoubtedly fantastic drivers/competitors.

      1. Jelle van der Meer (@)
        17th January 2011, 13:51

        Both of them have done things that are not great champion like but Alonso being a very poor loser is worse to me than MSC cheating.

        I also find MSC to be the true racer and without doubt the better more complete total driver probably only 3rd after Senna and Fangio.

        On stats there is no question as shown above – so my vote goes to MSC and hope he proves all the critics wrong by at least winning 1 more race in 2011.

    2. I love this but I’m changing the “think” to “I’m not sure” Where is the stat for most sneaky and underhanded. Glad to see Alonso get the bounce. Great pairing.

    3. Schumacher for me. Really hard though, because like smifaye I don’t have an obvious like for either of them. In terms of what they have done for F1 though, Schumacher wins. He is one of the reasons for the high standard of modern F1 drivers, being 110% committed to his cause. Alonso and Schumacher are similar in many respects though.

      Interesting point – in the two largest F1 team orders scandals – Austria 2002 and more recently Germany – Schumacher pushed Barrichello onto the top step. He acknowledged that Barrichello had won the race and not him. Alonso never even suggested that Felipe had won the race.

      1. sw6569,

        Interestingly, that acknowledgement put Ferrari into more trouble. Alonso knew such an acknowledgement would be hypocritical and mindless. If he was truly concerned about integrity he shouldn’t have complained about not being able to get past him. But changing steps on the podium by Michael seemed to me like blowing the trumpet, “You know guys, I’m an honest person.” What I like about Alonso is that he just isn’t bothered about mere facades.

        As for who to vote for, well, it’s a really tough one. But Alonso just zips past for the simple reason, neither of his two championships were handed to him on a platter. And even when he didn’t win the championship Alonso finished 3rd (2nd on pure points) in 2007 and 2nd in 2010.

        In 2003 he did have an outside chance of winning the championship, but was turned down by an unreliable Renault.

        For Schumacher, his 1995 title is controversial considering the suspected use of banned electronics. His titles in 2002 and 2004 were won in a car miles ahead of the rest.

        But that’s not taking anything away from him, but Alonso’s composure in the second half of 2006, when everything seemed to be going against him and the team he just held on piling on the pressure in an inferior car, is just amazing. So I think Alonso should get past this one, because if stats were the final word there wouldn’t be a need for this competition.

        1. The reasoning in your first paragraph bemuses me but in any case it probably had more to do with team orders being legal when MS got the advantage of it but against the rules when FA got the benefit.

  7. Ok, so because the pairings, if an actual list of drivers gets compiled at the end of this, as opposed to just the one winner, I am going to completely dismiss anyone below the top spot. MS deserves to win this pairing, but neither of them deserve to go out in round one and there are certainly several drivers who when paired up with either of them, would loose. And loose badly.

    So anyway, my vote goes to Schumacher, there are very few drivers who would beat him and Alonso, good as he is, is not one of them.

    1. Ral, this isn’t the 1st round… and Alonso did beat Schumacher, twice. (3 times counting this year).

      1. Alonso beat Schumacher once. If I take it by your logic, Schumacher beat him 3 times, although they didn’t actually compete for the same positions those years.

        1. I meant Alonso beat him in ’05 and ’06 and ’10 but that wasn’t really a fair battle.

    2. I think Ral meant beating Schumi in the poll. But I agree with you on the fact that both Alonso and Schumacher would beat a lot of other people who have now advanced to the next round.

    3. It’s round nr. 2! But I agree, that it is a hard choice to make.

      I think Alonso is currently better and might get very far. But Schumacher has already acheived a lot more and I think he should problably win this.
      But I am not decided Yet.

      1. Huh? Rounds in this excercise of coming up with the best F1 driver of all time I mean. Not talking about the actual F1 WC.

        Surely this is the first round? It’s the first pairing for Schumacher and Alonso. Second pairing for a driver would make the second round etc.

        1. Round 1: Alonso vs Scheckter, Schumacher vs Farina

    4. but neither of them deserve to go out in round one

      You see the image at the top which reads “Champion of Champions Round 2”?

      1. Yes, but while you can call it round 2, it’s still these two drivers’ first matchup. Unless I missed their first and you didn’t link them in the list at the bottom of this article.

        It doesn’t matter, it’s your setup. My point was that the result will not be a valid list of best drivers (ie. best, second best, third best of all time etc.), but rather only the single best driver.

        1. My point was that the result will not be a valid list of best drivers (ie. best, second best, third best of all time etc.), but rather only the single best driver.

          Exactly. That’s why it’s “Champion [singular] of Champions”.

          1. Also one might add that’s it’s not about the best driver it’s about the best champion, which I’m not sure exactly how to quantify but that’s my issue I guess…

      2. It’s the luck of the draw. This is bound to happen. It’s like in the World Cup where you get one quarter final being Holland vs Brazil and another USA vs Ghana.

        It’s a tough one because they are two of the greatest drivers from my era. I think Schumacher was just brilliant for so long though and I remember so many incredible drives from him e.g Spain 96, Spa 97, Malaysia 99, Brazil 06 And loads more.

        1. Is there actually a draw or does Keith just decide?

        2. It’s also a good pairing as it’s easier to compare 2 drivers from the same era.

        3. Same era??? Fernando was 10 when Mike started in F1, he was 11 when Mike won his first race, and he was 13 when Mike won his first championship.

          Granted, their careers have overlapped, but Mike has overlapped many drivers.

          Senna, Prost, Mika, Hill, Jacques are more relevant to Mike.

          Hamilton, Button, Vettel, Kimi are more relevant to Alonso.

          Yea, they raced each other, but Mike was one his down-slope and Fernando was on his up-slope. I don’t think this poll is very fair compared to some of the others I’ve seen, like many others have said in the comments, neither of these drivers deserve to go out in round 1, and on top of that, they are only somewhat relevant to each other. Not 100% relevant

          1. round 2…..somehow I missed that….doesn’t change my comment really though. Where is Mika, Hill, Jaques. Or maybe they went out in round 1, I must have missed some of them.

            Also, Keith, I’m not knocking the poll, it is fun and a great idea…

      3. Anyway it’s too early for both if the drivers will be in order of results. One of these two will be in the bottom of the list if there will be one.
        And are these matching ups casual?

        1. OK, there won’t be a list. A new idea for a new series of polls?

          1. I think that its really early to match these 2 drivers together, since Shumacher or Alonso (more likely) doesn’t deserve to leave in round 2.

    5. Ral, I agree. This was an easy way to get rid of Alonso (in this poll). I love this idea for the off season, but I was afraid of poll like this. I think Alonso should have been paired with Hamilton, their battles are FAR more relevant. Mike and Mika would have been a better poll in my mind.

      Or, just random pairings of drivers taken from a hat….or multiple pairings so that there is no single elimination….oh well, there’s no perfect way to do it and it’s still fun

      1. No that I see Keith’s response that it’s the Champion (singular), then I guess this doesn’t really matter huh. even if Alonso stayed in, he would eventually either face mike or be eliminated first, so it would change the result….

  8. I’ll have to vote for Alonso. Simply because Alonso is able to consistently perform in a mediocre car. As good as Schu is in a good car, I don’t think he can go toe to toe with Alonso in the same car.

    1. Even when the car wasn’t the best, Schumacher could put in some incredible feats – just look at 1996-98 in particular.

    2. Schumacher is driving in f1 since 1991. In those 16 years he definitly didn’t always have a good or the best car and always performed atleast great with the car he had (1996 for example). People always look at the 2nd part of his ferrari years (meaning 2000-2004). In which 2000 and 2003 were close battles by the way.
      Anyway Alonso is a great driver, but i rank Schumacher higher.

    3. Not quite right. From 1991-1999 Schumacher had never more than the 2nd best car. In 1992 in similar equipment to Senna he beat Senna to 3rd in the championship, in 1996 in a ferrari that Eddie Irvine could barely drag into the top ten he won 3 races and finished 3rd in the championship, in 1997 in a car inferior to the Williams he went into the last race leading the championship, 1998… 2005 the ferrari was well off the pace and Schumacher still finished the season close to the top, 2006 Alonso had the better machinery until about half way and Schumacher clawed back a 25 point disadvantage to almost win the title, but for bad luck in the last two races who knows. Alonso is good but not Schumacher good yet.

      1. well said, I particularly remember his first season at ferrari. That car was as bad as it was ugly, yet he still won at Spa.

        1. Yes, that for me also tips the balance – how he did so well in that Ferrari that seemed to loose parts on track like it was a 2010 Virgin.

          Last year the competition was fierce, and the car about as bad, relatively, as the early 2008 renault – he did about the same as Alonso could then. But he is already looking towards this year, and beyond, finding out what to change to challenge again. I don’t know that he will succeed, but it won’t be for lack of trying, so Schumacher goes through.

      2. In 1996 in a ferrari that Eddie Irvine could barely drag into the top ten he won 3 races and finished 3rd in the championship.

        This is a point against Irvine rather than one in favour of Schumacher in my opinion. Irvine won no races in three years (1996-1998), and in the last two Schumacher challenged for the title, so I don’t think Schumy outperformes so much that he almost won the title and his team mate won no races.

        1. Am i the only one who thinks Irvine was a good enough driver. Meaning i don’t rate him lower than Barrichello for example. I don’t know the stats but at jordan they were evenly matched if i remember correctly. Anyway if you ask all schumachers teammates under ode if schumacher outpreformed the car, i think most would agree. Maybe barri not but he still thinks he could have been WC at ferrari. This while he was 95% of the time slower meaning move over 2nd driver (yes ferrari also didn’t handle this very well).

      3. Schumi and Alonso are pretty much the same type of driver. They are ruthless in their quest for glory. As I always say, they have a one track mind, just to win at any cost.

        All great champions are/were ruthless, look at Senna and Prost..win at all costs.

        This is a difficult vote. Michael clearly won the chunk of his championships at a time there wasnt any one driver that posed a threat. Alonso on the other hand, toppled the The King to be the youngest double world chanmpion.

        I think this vote is highly subjectiove. Schumacher is the finished article, a closed book that just launched its second edition, while Alonso on the other hand essentially has another 7 to 8 good years left.

        I call a draw!!

    4. Sorry but I never get the argument about Schumacher not being able to win in a good car.

      His Benetton was not a top car from 1992-1994 and from what I’ve seen he drove brilliantly and even one a title in it.

      1. hmm i’d dispute that it was not a top car in 94, but you are right. 2005 he got a win too in a car that wasn’t great, and his Ferrari in 96 was terrible yet we all remember his race in spain!

        1. His 2005 win was in a race (USA) where there were only 6 cars: Ferraris, Jordans and Minardis.

        2. 2005 he got a win too in a car that wasn’t great

          Albeit practically by default when the far stronger Michelin teams pulled out at Indy…

          Did well to finish third in the WC holding off Montoya though mind you that year.

          1. ah, i just looked at the stats but hadn’t realised it was that race. I take back that point. His race at Imola though, that same year, was fantastic

        3. Ask Johnny Herbert or Jos Verstaphen, both regarded as very fast & both completly unable to get anything out of the benneton at the same time that MSC was winning races..

          In 2010 MS had the 1 thing that can slow him down, a car with understeer. Think about it, for a guy with briliant car control, if a car has a sharp pointy front end then they just make it work for them & hence the cornering limit of the car becomes higher in their hands.

          If the car understeers? Well no amount of driving input or throttle control can stop that understeer(short of slowing down even more), all you can do is try & drive around it as much as possible. It still has no front end grip, hence no possibility of being made to go through a corner faster than what your teammate at the time (ahem Rosberg) can also manage…

          Fingers crossed the 2011 Merc is pointy in the front end, I’m not saying Rosberg won’t like it every bit as much as MSC, but I think its then that we will see what MSC is fully capable of in a car again. A well balanced car with good front end grip would be even better for both drivers, but I think as long as the front end has the grip, MS will shine again.

      2. I hear the argument about Schumi and “only winning in a good car” rather a lot.

        Then I mention his drive in San Marino 05 in that terrible Ferrari, lapping two or more seconds a lap faster and the argument falls quickly, lol.

        Alonso is special, no doubt, but Schumi is a rare breed.

        1. I just tend to think people who say that either have short memory, or weren’t around in the ’90ties; I remember how exciting he was before he won the ’94 WDC surrounded by (rumours of?) trick car and “missteering” into Hill. That was rather disappointing because I used to like the young incredable German. And then the disbelief as he went to a Ferrari that had been midfield runners for years but immediately showed he could get good results if they lasted until the finish.

          Schumachers’s stats are of course heavily influenced by the years of Ferari dominance, and likewise Alonso has had both his early Minardi, the growing pains early at Renault and then the ’08 and ’09 bucket to bring his stats down, but those stats do tell the story of how much in control Schumacher was for years.

          1. I completely agree, I remember as a kid Schumacher was one of my favourite drivers to watch. He always seemed to outdrive his car and I also loved the fact that whenever he made the podium he had a big smile on his face, and it always seemed genuine.

            Then he took out hill and I started to dislike him. Then I didn’t like him cause he was dominating too much (I was a kid and I wanted to see racing!).

            Now I kinda like him again. I’d prefer it if he didn’t win another championship (save that for Rosberg; he deserves it), but I’d definately like to see him on the top of the podium a couple more times.

    5. For what I have been reading, I suppose MS is gonna lose. It makes me laugh…
      Forget his titles and just look how good he was from 96-99 with Ferrari…
      3 wins in 96? I am a Ferrari fan and remember really well how “fast” was that car. :)

  9. Schumacher, easily. It’s difficult to argue with seven World Championships.

    1. Agree with PM,SCHUMI ALL THE WAY TO GO

      Michael Schumacher 100% the BEST EVER!!

      I also think Alonso is a great driver,a truly great driver,but not as good as the Champion of Champions in my book and zillions of others.In all fairness to Alonso the man totally resepcts Schumacher in every way.I think this is a great head to head.

  10. I’m a huge fan of Alonso and I think his championship victories in ’05 and ’06 with a car that wasn’t the quickest, were remarkable.

    However, Michael Schumacher did even better at Benetton, winning against the mighty Williams-Renault duo. And don’t forget that the car advantage he had at Ferrari was of his own making – no other driver could’ve lifted the Scuderia to the dizzying heights they reached. He may have had a rough couple of years after ’04, and his comeback hasn’t been great. But in the context of the rest of his frankly stupendous career, they are trifles.

    My vote goes to Michael, but I believe Alonso is more than capable of becoming a greater champion. Time will tell.

  11. Personal opinions aside, the results speak for themselves. Schumacher love or hate him won championships before his Ferrari reign and deserves this more than Alonso does.

  12. As much as it pains me to say it, I can’t vote for Alonso. Could he match Schumacher’s achievements? Yes. Is he as good as Schumacher? Yes. Is he better than Schumacher? Who knows.

    At this moment in time I can’t discount what Schumacher has done, as much as I’d like to. Alonso is only half way through his career and If this were done in another 10 years it would be easier to make a case for voting for Alonso.

    1. I tend to agree with you on this.

    2. This was my case too, I couldn’t vote Fernando. Maybe, ten years from now on, some fully winning seasons at Ferrari, and then, we could compare. But magic team or not, as much as I hate him, what Schu did from 2000 to 2004 was remarkable. Absolutely.

    3. “Champion of Champions”.

      Today not what might be.

      In 5 years we will do it again.

    4. I’ve been spending the best part of a week trying to rationalise a vote for Alonso but to be honest there’s just no way I could vote against the overwhelming acheivements of Schumacher, so I’m abstaining today. Its a shame to see Alonso go out so early but I guess there’s no shame in losing to Schumi.

    5. I agree with your reasoning. It was hard for me to give an unbiased vote on this one. But the way I look at it is, the only season they both had equally competitive cars(2006), Fernando came out on top. So he got my vote.

    6. Well said, and I tend to think you are right.

  13. Alonso is a good driver, Schumacher is a better driver, the stats don’t lie, no matter what you might think of them as persons ( and I dislike Alonso) , their preformances speak for themselves

  14. As fernando career is still relatively young, well compared to michael! id have to go with michael simply due to what he has achieved.

    But side by side you cant split them. they both have helped turn around benetton/renault and ferrari. people say ferrari were rubbish before michael, not so just check out alesi in 95 mega! fernando challenging for title up til final round in first season at ferrari is not too disimilar to 97 in both cases the other teams williams/red bull and mclaren (towards end of season in 97) were by far the faster yet through sheer determination and skill they clung on when anyone else on the grid would of thrown the towel. i cant help but think if lewis had this year had that same attitude he would of won the title. he only missed out by a few points but going into final 3l rounds he was giving the impression of a beaten man. you dont get that with fernando or michael and thats what makes them great team leaders.

    1. An Alonso vs. Hamilton contest will surely spawn fireworks!

  15. Shumacher. The regenmeister, the legend, the one who inspired a whole generation of young German drivers to even try their hands in motorsport.
    7 WDCs is insane, and for my money on the spirit of that alone, should he win the whole champion of champions debate.
    The guy did some dodgy stuff in his career, but somehow unlike Alonso, he doesn’t have that ‘unpleasantness’ about him, you know where you stand with Michael, he is the dominant force in the team, you dont get that feeling however, as you would with Alonso that he’d stab you in the back, or agree to a strategy forcing a teammate to crash(highly likely Alonso was in the know), or blackmailing a team because his demands of being a number one weren’t met.
    Shu all the way.

    1. In terms of ethics the only difference between the two is that Micheal would do his dirty work himself on the track whereas Alonso would try to do it secretly.

      I think that in terms of character and mentality, Alonso is in fact the closest one to Schumacher. As far as skills go, I really can’t tell. Alonso defeated Schumacher on the track twice for the championship and until now, never had a Ferrari powerhouse behind him. I think that this pair could be decided in 5 or 7 years from now, when Alonso is in the same position where Schumacher is now. I wouldn’t be surprised if their ways went ridiculously similar.

      Currently I have to vote Schumacher, but it’s purely because of overwhelming stats of Schuey.

      1. I am already tired of explaining that 2005 WC was Kimi vs Alonso, not Alonso vs Michael. Alonso won once Michael for the Championship, not twice.

        1. And 7 WC plus coming back after three years out with another team wich isn´t Ferrari is hugely brave. I vote for Michael and i think he´s the best ever ahead Prost and not only for statistics. His force of willness and ablity to work hard in his own sucess is superior to everybody in F1 story. Yaeh i know he don´t care about manners something but this is not kart racing, and nobody could have won all he won being the cleanest guy in and out he track. In modern F1 era it´s harder to make a diference and he did it 7 years at least.

          1. “he don´t care about manners something ” I wanted to say sometimes

    2. “or agree to a strategy forcing a teammate to crash(highly likely Alonso was in the know”

      The FIA found that Fernando had no knowledge of it and Piquet has said the same.

  16. Why do I get the sneaky suspicion by round two a Hamilton vs Senna final is on the cards.

    And no, thats not a conspiracy theorist at work.

    1. Assuming the round two brackets are going to be like this one, I don’t see a Senna-Hamilton faceoff. Specifically, I don’t see Hamilton beating Jack Brabham.

      I could be wrong though.

      1. I’d personally like to see Graham Hill get rather far, and/or Alain Prost.

    2. The only possible justifiable final could be Clark vs Senna. With Clark winning out.

  17. It’s impossible to argue with the Championships and the Stats, Schumacher is way out in front.

    In reality though I think this is very close and, as already pointed out, this match up is too early and will allow Champions through to the third round at Alonso’s expense. Ultimately it don’t matter though as there is only one winner and that is all that counts. The placings after that cannot be considered accurate, unless we use one of those sites that repeatedly pits random champion against random champion and scores accordingly, without the knockout element.

  18. It’s unfortunate, but Alonso is probably going to go out in round two. Schumacher is head-and-shoulders above every champion since ’94. He’s the master of the refueling era. I can’t imagine any other driver winning Hungary ’98 or France ’04 the way he did.

  19. Alonso is now approaching the same age/stage of his career that brought Michael Schumacher so much success at Ferrari. These next few years could be what defines his career and what he is remembered for if he manages to build Ferrari around him, as he did at Renault and like Schumacher did for so long.

    I had a look at the stats and when Schumacher was 29 (same age as Alonso is now)he had won 33 races which is close to the 26 Alonso has now, so there’s not that much in it at the same stage of their careers. They have also been competing for the championship the same number of times at the same age (both 4 Schumacher -94,95,97 and 98 and Alonso 05,06,07 and 2010)so there are some interesting comparisons.

    Despite not being a fan of some of his on track behaviour over the years Schumacher has to take this, I can’t see Alonso being the total dominant force he was in his prime, and the 96-99 years at Ferrari for me stand out from his career as he worked to develop the Ferrari, as well his Benetton title wins where the Williams was a better car.

    I suppose you could argue though that if Alonso ends up with four or five titles at the end of his career with drivers like Hamilton, Vettel, Button, Kubica etc as his rivals the competition he will have beaten will be much stronger than Schumacher, and then maybe he could rank ahead of him as after all he did beat him head to head in ’06 (when both had competitive cars) That is all rather hypothetical however so at the moment Schumacher wins in my opinion.

    1. There’s also the question of longevity. I remember Alonso saying in an interview after he’d won his first championship that he didn’t see himself being in F1 as long as MSC had been around.

      Then again back in ’94 I don’t think MSC would have seen himself being in F1 for at least another 12 seasons!

      1. Alonso did say that Burnout but I wonder if he’d be more willing to stick around now. At the time he had his title, was fighting for his second with Schumi about to retire and he was going to move to his dream team Mclaren. It looked liked he’d be the number 1 of F1. Since then he’s had two uncompetitive years at Renault, has a more challenging grid to face and has only just joined Ferrari. I don’t think he would have dreamt things would turn out the way they have.

  20. I’ve worked out the bracket, and Round 3 is going to get pretty crazy. All multiple champions and no easy choices. Vote wisely!

  21. It’s got to be schumacer, he was no1 for a good decade. You can’t argue with stats. Rosberg did beat him but the layoff most surely was a factor in this. If rosberg bests him this year than I might start to wonder, but like schumi said, he’s not going to be as good as when he was in his 20s

    1. Sorry, mate, but you’ll have to find a new username for yourself.
      I’ve been using ‘Damon’ on this site since Jan2008.

      1. Get yourself a gravatar set up and then we’ll know who is who as it’s linked to the email address.

  22. It is amazing to think that Schumacher was teammates with Nelson Piquet, and Alonso drove with his son.

    Somehow that had never clicked for me before.

    Anyway, my vote goes to Schumacher. He was able to perform at an extremely high level over a very long time period, with limited errors. Maybe Alonso can get closer in the future, but as it is now, Schumacher is streets ahead.

  23. This one is hard to call. Undoubtedly, Schumacher is exceptionally talented and driven,and the same can be said for Alonso. Where things begin to get complicated is when you measure the opposition both were against when they were winning their championships.

    In Schumacher’s case, his wins for Benneton were unbelievably overwhelming, but at the same time shrouded in controversy as there were claims, later verified, that they ran illegal traction control software. The sudden death of Ayrton Senna suddenly thrusted Damon Hill into the championship chase while he was psychologically unprepared for such a role.
    Tne Wiiliams was the only worthy challenger for the title and essentially only one Hill the logical protagonist as there was no stable second driver.
    The other teams, notably Mclaren were fielding new drivers and also were saddled with uncompetitive engines, while Ferrari were still in their limbo years.

    The FIA did try to engineer a title contest, which eventually ended in the walls of the Adelaide Circuit in Schumachers favour.
    Shumachers championship of 95 was more dominant before he left for Ferrari, where he spent the next 3years as Ferrari slowly built up the potential of the car.

    The 98/99 season, saw the Mclaren-Mercedes-Mika, combination, fully developed in potential and confidence and they were the true worthy opposition to Shumacher and Ferrari. By this time the Ferrari were very competitive, Mika won the championship of 98, and a broken leg stopped Schumacher mid season hence he lost the championship.

    By 2000, Mclaren was already somewhat on the decline, but still generally a credible front running team, Williams was also slowing ascending back to their pre 97 capabilities. But in all Ferrari was already enjoying a dominating lead in terms of car performance and all out support for a single driver championship push.

    Mika, haven become disillusioned with F1 at this time was preparing to make his exit, and Mclaren needing an all out racing driver that could take the car beyond the limits of the steady Coulthard, signed on Kimi, who proved to be an early opposition to Schumacher, when the car was reliable, alongside Montoya at Williams, who didn’t hesitate to rub wheels with Schumacher. Despite this, Ferrari still had a leg up on Williams and Mclaren hence their Dominance.
    Alonso’s entry into Renault, suddenly catapulted that team into the league of Williams and Mclaren, although Williams by this time was dropping its anchor. These 3 team opposition to Ferrari, were constantly heaving at the cracks of the Ferrari armour and occasionally stealing wins and positions.

    The equipment superiority Ferrari had enjoyed was no longer the case like wise, the driving talent, was on par or close with Shumacher.

    A few regulations changes did cloud the competitiveness of some teams, but that cannot detract from the fact that Ferrari and Schumacher, suddenly faced a tenacious adversary in a Renault, in the name of Alonso. Though his car lacked the outright speed of the Mclaren, at least in the hands of Kimi, it more that made up for it in the area of reliability. Ferrari were also scoring an own goal with a bewildering car design, combined with tyres of an unknown quantity -Michelin was enjoying a sudden performance upsurge – Alonso thus won his first championship, while reliability essentially robbed Kimi.

    Suddenly Ferrari were exposed and beatable. The quality of the drivers was also increasing.
    Which brings one back to Alonso. While his talent is unquestionable, and he did enjoy a certain level of preference in his Renault stint, he has found himself in a situation were, he has at any given time, more than 5 drivers capable of operating at his level and also with quality machinery.
    As a matter of fact, the quality of drivers is to high that it is sometimes hard to establish when the machinery is deficient. It is this very reason, that has prevented Alonso from enjoying any form of dominance in F1. It is also this same reason that has prevented Shumacher decimating the field as he once used to do.

    Baring any deficient car design by the front running teams, it is unlikely we will see the same level of dominance by a single driver like Schumacher had in his early years. It is possible to have multiple world championships consecutively, but the title fight will always be a close contest.

  24. Have added a summary of how the two drivers did in round one to the text.

  25. Michael Griffin
    17th January 2011, 11:25

    Voted for Schumacher. Alonso is great, but Schumacher is even better.

  26. Keith, you forgot to note that Schumacher’s 1997 points were erased.
    They’re not included in his totals, right?

    1. I’ve re-calculated all the points based on the current point system for the purposes of comparing how the drivers performed. With that in mind, I’ve not taken Schumacher’s 1997 ‘championship disqualification’ into account because it’s not relevant for that purpose. And it’s not as if anyone’s forgotten all about what he did in Jerez, is it?

  27. Gwad this is getting brutal! I can see this coming down to a Fanzio, MSC, Clark, Senna, Prost and Stewart shoot out.

    Dammit man I love Alonso, but…

    1. Hey, does anyone else have a final six? I’d love to see what you think.

      1. I’ve got a final 8, but beyond that it gets too close to call.

      2. My final 8 is the six drivers you’ve picked, plus Lauda and Brabham

        1. 32-16-8-4-2-1

  28. Has to be Schumacher. It is barely a debate. Also Alonso will never match Schumi’s achievements as Schumacher, Brawn and Todt are a dream team which can only be matched if Brawn and Newey decide to join Fernando at Ferrari. Even then it will be a tall order.

  29. It’s Schumacher for me. To rule over F1 (whether on the track or the media) for almost 20 years, 7 championships, 91 wins. Even Alonso said a couple of days ago that Michael is the one he fears the most. It speaks for itself.

  30. Sorry Fernando, ever since Schumacher moved to Benetton in ’92 I supported. You saw the talent from the moment he stepped into an F1 car, and to keep the success going for over a decade is remarkable.

    Greatest driver that has ever lived period.

  31. Schumacher. No one in the modern era even comes close.

  32. Alonso’s not gonna make it to the next round? Oh my…

    1. Yo’re not likely to get through to the next round if you’re pitched against the ‘Champion of Champions’. LOL

      The only way to stop what should be a foregone conclusion, is to pitch Hamilton against Schumacher.

      1. lol, agreed. Poor Shumi wouldn’t stand a chance against these guys & PM.

  33. without looking at the stats, schumacher is better in qualy, better in the wet, and a match for alonso in the dry. They are both very good in race managment, and both won in diferent teams.
    Without a doubt two great drivers, but the kaiser is a top five, while alonso isn’t.

  34. Alonso is the only driver to have beaten Schumacher, over the course of a season, while driving an inferior car. That’s why he gets my vote.

    1. That’s not true. The R26 was better than the F248 at least in the first half of the 2006 season. Just look at Fisichella & Massa’s performances in the first 9 races.

      Fisichella: 1 win, 1x 3rd, 37 points
      Massa: 0 wins, 1x 3rd, 28 points.

      In my book, Massa is the better driver of the two.

      1. Massa fell to pieces in Bahrain although the Ferrari’s had qualifying trouble in Malaysia so couldn’t stop Renault, Schumacher and Massa both messed up at Australia and Felipe was over ten seconds down on Fisi at Silverstone. I’d agree that Massa is/was better than Fisi but given car failures, Massa’s and Fisi’s inconsistencies it’s a bit harder to judge the speed of the car when looking at those two especially as it was Felipe’s first season in a top car.

  35. definitely Schumi, the king !!

  36. hmmm… A massive cheat vs a massive whinger…

    Think I will pass on this one!

  37. Schumacher, by some margin at this point in time. His drives throughout the 90’s were incredible, with some truly legendary races (Spa 1995, Spain 1996, Hungary 1998 etc.) To be able to beat Ayrton Senna in his first full season of Formula One and consistently challenge in second or third best equipment showed his quality.

    Although what he did a Ferrari later (2000-2004) was less popular, it showed he knew how to win outside the 90 minutes a weekend of the race itself, in building a strong team around him and dominating the sport for 5 years.

    The only real marks against him are the lack of quality opposition (No other world champions after Race 3 in 1994) and his weak comeback, but I think that his drives in the face of adversity and his ability to always be challenging at the sharp end and be 100% committed leave him unsurpassed as a true great.

  38. Oh Keith, why do you do this to us…

  39. A big match up between multiple world champions already, I wasn’t expecting something like this until the next round..

    For me Alonso is probably the best all round driver on the grid at the moment, but evaluating both careers on the whole I have to go for Schumacher.

  40. this is easy … its got to be schumi !

  41. OmarR-Pepper (@)
    17th January 2011, 14:13

    I don’t really like Alonso but he looks more talented than Schumacher. Why? Well, besides the first two Schum’s championships, he didn’t have serious contenders. Mika would have been one but Schum never beat Mika, the Ferrari was a class-apart car and that’s why he used to win. Schum usually won from the first row, he had some troubles overtaking… etc etc but looks like Alonso is going to quit from this contest, I’ve seen the number of votes and Schum is clearly the winner.

    1. Mika would have been one but Schum never beat Mika

      Schumacher beat him fair and square in 2000…

      he had some troubles overtaking

      You missed the 1995 European Grand Prix, 1996 Spanish Grand Prix and the 2006 Brazilian Grand Prix amongst many other races, my friend.

  42. I wonder if any of the ,currently alive, F1 champions actually are following this competition?

  43. Hard choice. But if you look at the 2006 season, you will see that Alonso beat Schumacher at equivalent material. So I vote Alonso.

  44. I told it before that Round 2 will be full of surprises, I don’t know how Keith does this but I wonder whether he does do what he likes.

    Only one winner for me

  45. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uk2p2nRK-p4

    That gives you an idea as to why Schumacher is the best driver. I know it’s old, but still tells you about how he gets more out of a car than a competent drive like Johnny Herbert. Completely destroyed Hill that year in what was a far better car, again, Hill was not a bad driver at all.

  46. I really love Alonso, but…he needs 1 more title to get my vote. so I went to Schumi.

  47. I can’t rate Schumacher because of the cheating. Fred gets my vote.

    1. “Fred’s” an angel isn’t he. ;)

      1. Compared to Schumacher? Yes, he is.

        1. No he isn’t. Schumacher has never illegally obtained posession of documents relating to a rival’s car. Schumacher has never blackmailed his team or boss. Schumacher has never had a teammate deliberately crash for him to win. Schumacher never got on the radio to whine and whinge to his team about his teammate simply defending his position.

          1. Fred has never had a team mate deliberately crash for him to win either…he knew nothing about it (unless you have some evidence that no one else has seen?). Nor has Fred ever illegally obtained documents relating to a rival’s car. The closest he got to them was hearing about them from de la Rosa. Finally, whining and whinging is not cheating. More to the point, Fred has never deliberately placed a fellow driver in danger, which Schumacher has done three times, four if you count the Barrichello incident.

            No, I think Schumacher has a lock on the cheating championship.

          2. Fred has never had a team mate deliberately crash for him to win either…he knew nothing about it

            Possibly, but his record before and after will equal the doubts to always linger and haunt him. Especially when his strategy for that race wouldn’t have otherwise made sense.

            Nor has Fred ever illegally obtained documents relating to a rival’s car. The closest he got to them was hearing about them from de la Rosa.

            What he took part in, in one of the biggest scandals ever to hit the sport definitely classifies as cheating. Stop denying it right here and now. It’s just an unfortuante stain on a good driver like Alonso’s image.

            Finally, whining and whinging is not cheating.

            In this case, whingeing and whining was cheating, as it instigated team orders which was against the rules. Remember that he urged the team to move Massa out of the way. He also turned his engine back up (against the advice given to both drivers) to appear faster than his teammate when he wasn’t.

            Overall, claiming that you pick Alonso over Schumacher because of the German’s cheating (and not for a proper reason, like Alonso’s 2006 title victory) is hypocritical and nonsensical.

          3. I’m reading a lot of accusations but nothing to back them up, and I see no mention of Schumacher’s demolition derby tactics in your comments. That’s hypocritical and nonsensical.

          4. What I am telling you about Alonso’s character is true, and you would know if you paid attention to the events in 2007 and 2010. I admitted that there’s not any clear evidence over crash-gate, but said that Alonso’s image would still leave doubt in most fan’s mind.

            I don’t remember saying that Schumacher has never done dodgy things in his career. But it’s you who seems to think that “destruction derby tactics” are the only form of cheating, and that’s simply not true.

        2. David, I have no love for Alonso- he is, as you say, a whiner and whinger, and certainly not above stretching the rules as far as he can. It’s unfortunate that he is such a good driver…makes it harder to trash him.

          And, I believe Schumacher is (was?) a better driver than Alonso. But any high jinks that Alonso may have got up to pale before Schumacher’s behavior, which has been outright dangerous at times. It’s not the only kind of cheating, but it’s the worst kind. Someone capable of that type of behavior just doesn’t rate in my book.

    2. That was as funny as South Park is.

  48. Both great, but greatness has different measures, and with such a statistical gulf between them I choose Michael, simply because he has the WDC’s in the bank. Ask me about potential and it may be closer but Alonso has far more to deal with in terms of competition and realistically I don’t think he will achieve to Schumachers level. However it’s notable that I never really liked either as personalities but each year respect both more for their talent.

  49. I’m not a big fan of either of them. It’s true Alonso beat Schumacher in 2006 fair and straight, but Schumacher statistics are downright amazing. And elevated Ferrari to level never seen before, so he gets my vote.

  50. I vote for Skatas!

  51. The two drivers i rate the highest in the last 15 years. Schumacher Wins it for me though. Alonso has the chance to beat him eventually but for now Schumi’s the king.

  52. What’s the matter damon? Don’t you agree with my posts damon? Lol

  53. The two people I reaaaaaalllly don’t like in F1, If it was an opinion poll I’d be torn between the two for their sheer arrogance.

    But its not an opinion poll and I’m extremely torn between the two because both are immense in each others way. Where-as Alonso has raw pace and a monster speed, Schumi has efficiency and detail to his name (Along with monster pace) You can only split these drivers into two categories:

    Overall Speed: Alonso
    Championship driver: Schumacher

    Unfortunantly for Alonso passion sometimes overcomes his talent as seen in ’07 and last year. So its Schumacher… JUST.

  54. Schumacher gets my vote simply for bringing Ferrari back from the dead in 1996. Sure he didn’t do it by himself, but by bringing in Ross Brawn, Rory Bryne, and Jean Todt he helped shape a team that would dominate the sport from 2000/2004 so completely. To look at one statistic, except for 1999, from 1997 to 2006 Schumacher was a threat in every single championship. To win, you had to beat the German and it was as simple as that.
    To a certain extent, Alonso’s double achievement with Renault is noteworthy, but nothing compares to the gamble Schumacher took. Michael was already a defending double world champion when he moved to Ferrari. Most drivers, even ones as good as Senna, would have gone to a front running team such as Williams. Michael chose not to, and it could have gone so horribly wrong for him. So, that alone gives this one to the German.
    Alonso for me is more traditional. Understandably he always wants and to a certain extent demands a fast car. I don’t think he would have taken such as big a gamble as Michael did fifteen years ago.

  55. To be honest, I think Alonso can be just as great as Schumacher. But at the moment he is just not there yet. Simply because he is a lot younger and stil has some good years left in him.

    For now, I have to say Schumacher. One of the top 5 drivers ever, Alonso one of the top ten drivers ever.

  56. Impreza_600BHP
    17th January 2011, 18:23

    cmon, 91 Race Wins, the amount of concentration, aggression and sheer will power that must have taken, regardless of having the best car its an almost super human acheivement, i can’t see anybody ever beating it, and to compare it against anything else is almost insulting to Shumacher, Alonso has a hell of long way to go before he get 91 Wins.

  57. It’s kinda weird: Keith didn’t bother giving a spiel about Schumacher, unlike every other driver, which all received a write up about their history in the sport and their achievements etc. Only real mention was the comment from Alonso. Is this simply because it’s assumed everyone knows Schumacher so well?? Or that there’s no point, because he will clearly beat Alonso in this poll?

    1. Michael = F1. No need to beat around the bush, everyone knows who he is.

  58. You can’t argue with 7 world championships.

    …Ok, some of us can, but that’s all about the ruthless wanting to win at al cost-attitude.

  59. Hi all,

    I only want to say that when Alonso won the 2005 and 2006 championship Sch was backed up with the ‘dream team’ of Jean Todt, Ross Brawn and Paolo Martinelli and he was driving for Ferrari plus Sch at that time had much more experince all of this says a lot about Alonso talent, confident and bravery not to be intimidated by Sch. even to day with much less faste car than Red bull vettel cod not catch him if not for the team mistake.

  60. I pick Alonso, he`s the only who beat the Kaiser

    1. Mika Hakkinen (98,99) Villeneuve (97) and Hill (96) all beat Schumacher during his Ferrari career. Alonso did break a run of five titles Schumacher claimed (2000/2004), but he certainly was not the only driver to beat Schumacher. Other title winners over Michael’s career include Senna (91), Mansell (92) Prost (93) and ofcourse Vettel in 2010.

      1. You`re right. I mean after the 00-04 era, where he was the only class driver in most of those years.

  61. That and his teamate letting him win a race ha ha ha

  62. There is no denying it – 7 world championships is an amazing achievement!!!! One that very possibly will never be beaten. Surely you can’t win so many titles without being the best? One or two maybe …. but seven? !!!
    Yes Schumi wasn’t always the greatest sport but that is part of the competitive nature that makes up a great driver. Senna had the same nature and was just as dirty. Time to stop making a villain out of Schumi.
    As for multiple world champion of absolutely nothing, Sterling Moss’s comments on Michael not having decent competition, lets not forget he raced against the likes of Senna, whom along with Schumi I rate as being the greatest the sport has ever seen. Stew in your bitter jealousy Sterling Moss, Sir of the Second place!

  63. Schumacher will go through easily just on the weight of his stats, but there’s an argument that Alonso clearly had the better of him when the chips were down and things were as equal as they can ever be.

    2006 was the microcosm showdown between those two, before Schumacher stalwarts could point to the effects of his layoff period, or mitigating problems with his Mercedes, and when he still had the Ferrari dream team.

    The FIA intervened as best it could to help the red assault, first by declaring that an inboard, passive damper which never sees airflow and had been ruled legal for a long period, was all-of-a-sudden a “moveable aerodynamic device”, requiring a hurried Renault redesign. This at a critical point in the WDC chase (a la the earlier outlawing of Michelin tyres, the outlawing of Beryllium alloys, the outlawing of brake-steer etc. etc.), and it led to a corresponding slump in form for Renault. Then, by sticking Alonso with a shocking penalty for “blocking”, as he drove his own fastest lap of the weekend in qualifying in Monza, and when no other car got within 100m of his (have there been any other such penalties since? and have cars been closer than 100m to each other in qualifying hot laps since then? they most certainly have!!!). And Alonso still took the WDC, almost solely because Schumacher made 4 serious errors during the year and Alonso made none of any note.

    Final tally:

    Races where points were thrown away through driver error:
    Alonso – 0
    Schumacher 4 (Melbourne, Monaco, Turkey, Hungary)

    Melbourne was an unforced MS DNF, crashing and destroying his car (he blamed the road). Monaco we all know, he should have finished 1st or 2nd and did one of the stupidest things in living memory. Turkey is a race where Alonso was flawless and Schumacher went off at turn 8, costing himself enough time to remove the chance of a Massa-sacrifice win. And in Hungary he collided with Heidfeld after cutting the chicane several times while trying to fend off De La Rosa.

    Mechanical DNFs:
    Alonso – 2 (Engine blow-up in Monza, Wheel in Hungary)
    Schumacher – 1 (Engine in Japan)

    Car problems in qualifying:
    Alonso – 1 (Puncture in Monza)
    Schumacher – 1 (Water pump in Brazil)

    FIA interventions:
    Alonso – 2 (Mass damper rule change mid-season, Monza ‘blocking’ penalty)
    Schumacher – 0
    (Both received penalties in practice in Hungary, which were probably fair enough in both cases and somewhat cancelled each other out)

    I don’t think Alonso has performed as flawlessly since, and his 2010 season was something of a litany of errors (Melbourne turn 1, China jump start, Monaco crash, Silverstone penalty, Turkey mistake in quali, Spa crash), but this was a season when serial risk-taking was a must if you weren’t sitting in a Red Bull, they were just miles quicker. Also, the depth of competition was just higher than any year for a long time and all the WDC eligible drivers made errors.

    As for “Senna was just as dirty”, it’s a meme that will live forever (partly because we keep saying it again and again on message boards, even those among us who weren’t watching at the time) but I for one don’t buy it at all and I never will. All roads lead to Suzuka 1990 on this and I have always said that Suzuka 1990 was a mistake from Senna because (a) 2 wrongs don’t make a right, so the facts that he was reacting to Balestre having effectively stolen his pole position by intervening and putting him on the dirty line, with Prost having fouled him the prior year, are technically immaterial, and (b) the risk was that he would always be remembered by some for that move alone. But to claim that Senna’s act of revenge in Japan is somehow comparable with Schumacher’s taking out Hill after he had already hit the wall and crippled his own car, or his tragic attempt to foul Villeneuve to a DNF in Jerez, or his blocking the track in Monaco, is a joke. Senna never did anything that cynical or dastardly or cheap. You can (and I do) argue that Senna went too far, when he was embroiled in a bitter personal vendetta with two Frenchmen, one of whom could be devious and underhand and the other of whom was a vindictive autocrat, and believed (rightly or wrongly) that he was therefore acting purely in self defense. He should have let Prost go, regardless. But Schumacher’s unprovoked attacks on Hill, JV and the already faster Alonso at Monaco, were attacks on drivers who had done nothing to him other than drive too quickly, and Schumacher enjoyed the assistance of the governing body for years while Senna found its President trying to run him out of the sport forever. There was nothing “comparably dirty” about it.

    1. Senna also drove dangerously in Estoril, 1988. Like Schumacher he was a ruthless racer, who occasionally reverted to underhand tactics on-track to win. If Schumacher is labelled as dirty, Senna has to be too.

      For me, it’s all unimportant and over-emphasised by “fans” who dislike talented drivers. They are legends, and i’ll take them over so-called “gentlemen” like D. Hill or D. Coulthard any day.

      1. Yes, and go to Youtube and re-watch the Estoril 88 and Hungary 2010 blocks, and then tell me that the former doesn’t look unbelievably mild by comparison. Sometimes it’s a question of degrees as well as a question of motives.

        1. In both cases they simply wanted to hold onto their position, by moving across the race track once. And in both cases, they happened to go close to the pitwall with their adversary in doing so.

          Neither was particularly mild.

    2. This little rabbit is good, While this other surprisingly similar rabbit is VERY VERY BAD!

      Sorry dude, That’s all I’m getting.

  64. Ouch, unlucky draw! :P

    Though if it was Lewis instead of Alonso, everyone would be voting for lewis, using the excuse “he is young and has time to beat micheal” XD

  65. This one is fairly straight forward for me.

    No doubt Alonso is massively talented, thats plainly obvious, but it’s very hard to argue against 7 world titles and the umpteen other records Schumacher holds.

    So it’s Schumacher for me.

    Also Keith, I was just wondering how these rounds are being picked, are they drawn at random or how do you do it??

    1. Also Keith, I was just wondering how these rounds are being picked, are they drawn at random or how do you do it?

      Well Spud I don’t think he’s doing it to cheese anyone off… if he wanted to to that he’s have paired Hamilton and Mansell and we haven’t seen Mika yet… so I think It’s going to get even more painful for me…

  66. I dont’t understand the voting. I see 2 reasons:

    1. the CO.UK extension

    2. people think car performance is more important than the drivers’

    1. 1. Keith’s said it before and I’ll say it again, most visitors to this site are from outside the UK.

      2. Schumacher had an overwhelmingly superior car only between 2001 and 2004. How do you account for three other titles and three runner-up finishes? And if you’re talking cars, the 2007 McLaren was better than the 2007 Ferrari.

      1. And even in 2003, he didn;t have much of a car advantage. In 2001, he had an advantage, but not enough that Mclaren and Williams weren’t able to challenge him for individual race wins (their drivers lacked the consistency to put up a proper title challenge).

      2. Noone can deny that car performance counts more than 80 % if one wants to win a race/championship yet some drivers can make a difference in some races due to their sheer brilliance. The recent Singapore Gp is such example where Aslonso was flawless but if someone wants to win a championshiup, fastest car is a must. If not the fastest, it should be fast and reliable.

  67. Looking at the notable team mates it seems Martin Brundle’s reputation has collapsed inside a week! He was a notable team mate of MS in round 1 but not now?

  68. The only drivers that stand a chance of beating Schuey in this wee competition are Senna, Prost, Fangio, Clark & Stewart me thinks…

  69. I hate it when people say “the stats speak for themselves”. If so, this would’t be a competition. Also you would be comparing the cars too.

    I think this is about the best driver but only those who ever became world champion.

    1. I hate it when people say “the stats speak for themselves”. If so, this would’t be a competition.

      But in some of the pair-ups, the stats lean ridiculously heavily in one driver’s favour, that such a comment is worth using.

      And it still would be a competiton- since different drivers will be ahead in different staistics. Fangio and Clark have pretty much the best win and pole ratio of anyone, despite not having anywhere near the most wins or poles overall. Senna has a better pole ratio than Schumacher, but Schumacher has a better win ratio. Someone else might have the most point per finish or available finish but be behind in other areas.

  70. what do stats have to do in a 1 vs 1 comarison ?

    this is Alonso vs Schumacher

    Alonso vs Schumacher is 2-0

    Alonso is much faster anyway…

    a very good reference is Felipe Massa…
    we know that Massa is anytime abywhere 0.3 slower than Alonso

    Schumacher was even slower than Massa in most cases in 2006

    …facts not stats.

    1. Schumacher was even slower than Massa in most cases in 2006

      …facts not stats.

      That is a joke, surely? And yet you accuse others of “living a myth”?

  71. Schumacher – 514, Alonso – 144

    Maybe Alonso really should be worried about Schumacher this year …

  72. Michael Schumacher hands down. Alonso is by far not a contender for the greatest driver but Schumi definitely is.

  73. Jeffrey Powell
    18th January 2011, 19:12

    I find it difficult to be so premature, is the vote not for who ‘WAS’the best?. I am not a great Alonso fan but I think this is a bit unfair , Schumacher should get 100% if the vote is for has….s.

  74. My two most unpopular drivers. Wow, what a choice. :D

  75. I think both drivers deserve to be called champions and it is difficult to say which of them was better.

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