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25 years ago today: Michael Schumacher's first Formula One race

  • Published on 25 Aug 2016 16:13
  • comments 0
  • By: Fergal Walsh

25 August 1991; a date etched into the minds of Formula One fans worldwide. The Belgian Grand Prix was set to take place, but in the build-up to the weekend, only one team dominated the headlines.

Jordan Grand Prix driver Bertrand Gachot was sitting in an English jail due to an incident with a London taxi driver. The team needed a replacement so Eddie Jordan drafted in a young German going by the name of Michael Schumacher.

No-one really knew about the man who was brought in and doubts were cast, but Jordan had been impressed by his pace at a test at Silverstone he did a week earlier. 

Schumacher made his first stance in Formula One in qualifying for the Grand Prix. On his first ever weekend in F1, Schumacher placed his car seventh on the grid, four places ahead of team-mate Andrea de Cesairs. Everyone was surprised about his immediate pace.

His good fortune didn't last long however. Despite making up a position at the start of the Grand Prix, Schumacher had a clutch failure going through Eau Rouge and was forced to retire.

Schumacher had already shown what he was capable of, and following is debut there was an almighty scramble for his signature. He was approached by Benetton and ended up signing for them for the remainder of the season.

He went on to win 2 world titles with the team, in 1994 and 1995 and the rest of his story is a magical piece of F1 history. 7 world titles, 91 race victories, 68 pole positions and 155 podiums. The German is renowned by many as the greatest of all time and statistically, he is.

Michael Schumacher inspired many to enter motor racing and the world of Formula One owes a lot to him. 25 years ago today, his story began. 

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