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Murray Walker: Hamilton better than Schumacher and Senna

  • Published on 05 Aug 2020 11:23
  • comments 9
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Veteran F1 commentator Murray Walker says Lewis Hamilton's “clean as a whistle” racecraft puts him ahead of Michael Schumacher and Ayrton Senna in head-to-head debates.

Hamilton is on course to take hold of the record for most grand prix wins this year, as he is currently just 4 victories off Schumacher's tally of 91. Hamilton could also match Schumacher's seven world drivers' championships in 2020.

The deliberation of who is the greatest of all-time in F1 has raged for some time, however, Walker says it's impossible to get a definite answer due to the vast changes F1 has gone through over the last 70 years.

Speaking to the In the Fast Lane Podcast, Walker said: “People say to me 'Who is the greatest?' I always say it's impossible to say because the drivers, the circuits and the cars were different. You can say who is the best of the generation like Schumacher was the best of his generation, Senna and various other people.

“There is no common yardstick that you could measure all the F1 grand prix drivers over the years against, so it's entirely subjective. For me, the greatest of all time is a chap called Tazio Nuvolari.

“When I mention his name people look blankly at me because they don't understand, they've never heard of him. Fangio took a lot of beating, Jim Clark, Jackie Stewart. But which is the best? I really don't know.

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“I used to say Fangio, I think I'm going to have to say very shortly - Lewis Hamilton. If you look at the statistics, he has already got more poles than Schumacher. He's got at least three years in him if he doesn't hurt himself or leave Mercedes for some reason or they decide to stop.

“In that case, he's still got at least another three championships ahead of him. So statistically, he will become the greatest. But he's also in my opinion, and this is very contentious indeed, he's better than either Schumacher or Senna.”

Walker cited the point that Schumacher and Senna were involved in a number of controversial incidents amid title fights, while Hamilton has steered clear of such incidents in the heat of battle.

“Both of them, Schumacher and Senna, adopted at various times in their career highly debatable driving tactics like Schumacher stopping deliberately at Monaco to prevent [Alonso] getting pole position, like Schumacher colliding with Villeneuve at Jerez in 1997, like Senna with Prost in 1990 in Japan.

“Lewis Hamilton has never been anything like that, he's always driven as clean as a whistle. He's an extremely nice, gigantically talented driver, and I don't think we've ever seen anybody like him before.”

Hamilton took a dramatic race win at his home grand prix at Silverstone last Sunday, crossing the line with three wheels intact following a late-race puncture. 

Replies (9)

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  • Manto02

    Posts: 93

    Hamilton has 91 pole positions and 87 wins
    Schumacher has 68 pole positions and 91 wins

    Hamilton will be able to beat Schumacher, he will have 8 world titles next year and a lot more wins and pole positions, but he will never be a better driver than Schumacher.
    It's a lot easier to start from pole and win, Schumacher won more races than his poles, and this is a really impressive record that will never be achieved by Lewis , and it shows how good Schumacher was even in the years without a dominant car

    • + 4
    • Aug 5 2020 - 11:55
  • Mr Walker is absolutely right: each one dominates his era.

    However, LH will soon hold all thev records. And there is one more thing that will always be to Lewis' advantage. He is the coolest and less impulsive of the three. THAT makes a difference.
    As for Tazio, he must have been the greatest Hero of all. Those drivers were heroes.

    • + 0
    • Aug 5 2020 - 14:09
  • JuJuHound

    Posts: 352

    Once they all are gone, Senna, Schumi, Hammy, some good races might happen up there in Heaven, let's wait then with comments like these, I'm sure Murray will comment this Heaven races aswell.

    • + 0
    • Aug 5 2020 - 14:41
  • TheDentist

    Posts: 24

    Finally, someone talking sense! He makes some valid points

    • + 0
    • Aug 5 2020 - 14:59
  • xoya

    Posts: 583

    Brit thinking that another Brit is the best ever. Who would've thought? :)

    Probably the fairest way of determining who is best is by comparing percentages of wins and pole positions.

    Every other method is subjective.

    • + 0
    • Aug 5 2020 - 15:52
    • So you mean plain numbers are "objective"?

      • + 0
      • Aug 6 2020 - 08:11
    • xoya

      Posts: 583

      Nothing is fully objective, but it's the closest thing we have to objectivity, given the discrepancy between the number of races per year driven now and before.

      • + 0
      • Aug 6 2020 - 09:43
    • The closest thing is what M. Walker wisely says:
      "It's impossible to say because the drivers, the circuits and the cars were different"
      "it's impossible to get a definite answer due to the vast changes F1 has gone through over the last 70 years."

      • + 1
      • Aug 6 2020 - 14:01
  • Can't argue with MW on this, I really disliked Schumacher from the moment he deliberately drove Damon Hill off the track, then Villeneuve, the guy was a cheat, plain as that. But he was a brilliant driver. He will rightly forever be tainted by his actions. I feel the same way about Senna, brilliant driver but a lunatic at times. Cannot be considered the greatest for that alone.

    • + 0
    • Aug 8 2020 - 00:25

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