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Formula One sucks anyway . It must be more than 20 years since I gave a damn
Yeah, I stopped following it as early as 2004.
 

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I could go on and on about this topic but I'll only say this: in a sport where a car is so important the results are a lot more telling when the driver is sitting in a competitive car rather than a dominant one. And Schumacher blows them all out of the water.
 

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People will call him goat in 2030, now everybody is bored about what is happening in f1. same stuff went on with Schumacher in his prime Ferrari years. People somehow forget that Schumacher had the best car as well.
Only three of his seven championships were won in dominant cars though. 1994 could have been another but the disqualification fuckery pushed it down to the wire.
 

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Discussion Starter · #27 · (Edited)
It reIates to GOATs of one sport which is being compared to the FedaI debate currentIy & a historic milestone to boot.
 

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Yeah, I stopped following it as early as 2004.
F 1 made me appretiate Moto GP a lot more back then . Then I thought a motor sport can have real competition , skills , finesse , excitement , fk balls
 

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Goat discussion is pathologic. You people are mentally unwell. Anyway there is no goat in F1, and if there is one its Senna, Prost, Fangio or maybe Schumacher.
Senna died too early to have a real chance, Prost with only 4 titles.
It must be between Fangio, Schumacher and Hamilton.
 

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In reality Fernando Alonso is the GOAT. His teams have always let him down when he was clearly the best driver by far
Kind of like Aaron Rodgers tbh
Being the best isn’t always enough to be the greatest
 

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I can see there are two types of posters on this topic: casuals who stopped following F1 long ago anyway and casuals who don't have much knowledge about the history of Grand Prix racing.

If there is a single candidate for the greatest Grand Prix driver ever, then it is arguably Alain Prost. Several reasons:

1) In F1, your most important rival is your teammate since they (presumably) have the same equipment. Yet Prost was never outscored in a season by more than a single point - and even this happened only twice, in 1980 when he was a rookie and he had to miss several races due to injuries through no fault of his own, and 1984 when reliability let him down and he lost the title to Lauda by half a point. So in 13 seasons and 199 race starts, he was outscored by a total of 1.5 points. Even when he didn't win the title in 1988 against Senna, he outscored him 105-94, a difference of 11 points which was more than what a win's worth back in the day.

2) Speaking of teammates, Prost had the toughest and most impressive teammate list in the history of the sport - and that's why all the others (Senna, Schumacher, Clark, Fangio) fade in comparison to his achievements. Prost had 10 teammates in 13 seasons. Out of those 10, 5 were world champions (Lauda, Rosberg, Senna, Mansell, Hill) and three others were GP race winners (Watson, Arnoux, Alesi). Only 2 (Cheever, Johansson) can be considered journeymen. Schumacher spent ages with dedicated no. 2 drivers such as Irvine and Barrichello, Senna did the same with teammates like Cecotto, Dumfries, Nakajima and Berger.

3) Prost was the king of race pace. Back in an age when fastest laps were not just a gimmick achieved by getting fresh tyres a handful of laps before the chequered flag but had to be earnt on track on merit, Prost scored 41 of those. In comparison, Senna only had 19. As a result, Prost often won races starting from a lower grid position. Qualifyings don't give you points, race results do.

4) Prost was the king of race days in general. Contrary to the popular belief of casual viewers and millennials watching garbage like that Senna movie by Kapadia, Prost had an even higher winning percentage than Senna, despite usually qualifying lower. Senna only managed to win seven times throughout his entire career when starting outside of the first row, Prost did this an astonishing twenty-two times - that's 43.2 per cent of all his winnings. He was a master at managing races, making crucial overtakes and maximising the results. His highlight was the 1990 Mexican Grand Prix where he started from a lowly 13th only to overtake Senna, Mansell, Berger, Piquet on track and win the race.

5) Prost is the only man in recent memory who was able to win a title driving clearly second-tier machinery in 1986. On top of that, those dominant Williams cars were driven by two ATGs, Mansell and Piquet. Senna, for example, never won a drivers' title not driving the constructors' champion car.

6) Prost was never dependent on a specific team, a specific construction or a specific engine to win. He won races driving for 4 different teams (Renault, McLaren, Ferrari, Williams) and 4 different engines (Renault, Porsche, Honda, Ferrari) - both stats are records tied with Fangio. He won 35 races with turbo engines (which factually makes him the greatest and most successful driver of the first turbo era) but also won 16 races with normally aspirated engines.

7) Regardless of the cars he drove or the teammates he had, he was in contention for the title in a whopping 10 seasons out of a 13-season-long career. He missed out on the title by just 2 points in 1983, by just 0.5 points in 1984 and because of the moronic 11-best-results-rule in 1988 (this rule was thankfully and rightly scrapped a few years later). In other words, Prost came ridiculously close to become a seven-time-champion in an era when only the first six finishers got points and cars not finishing some 20-30 per cent of the races due to reliability issues was perfectly normal. In comparison: Schumacher needed 14 seasons, a dedicated no 2. driver, a more permissive point scoring system, almost perfect technical reliability and what was the most dominant team up to that point to achieve seven titles. The same applies to Hamilton in case he secures his 7th title this year (which he almost definitely will): 14 seasons, a weak teammate in Bottas, fantastic reliability, a permissive scoring system and the team that has been utterly dominant since 2014.

I could go on but these are the main points why nobody in the history of motorsports can touch the legacy of Prost.
 

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For me it's Senna, Schumacher and Fangio, pick any order you want. Senna for sheer skill (watch the opening laps of Donnington 1993), Schumacher for his incredible consistency and Fangio for his unparalleled dominance, albeit with much shorter seasons and probably lesser competition.
Those who watched during the 60s will also tell you Jim Clark was as good a driver as any who ever lived, but he unfortunately he died before he could really put the runs on the board.

All that said, Hamilton is obviously an incredible driver, but that Mercedes is as good a car as I've ever seen over a 5+ year period. Not to mention that Hamilton was beaten several times by Button when paired up with him as well as by Rosberg in 2016. A wonderful driver indeed, but for me he's behind Senna, Schumacher and Fangio.
 

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I welcome Hamilton breaking Schumacher's records. The latter had too many unsportsmanlike stunts (like crashing into others), trying to win at all costs. Even as a teammate.

3) Adelaide 1994

Opinions are still divided on Michael Schumacher's Benetton, a car many in the sport believed to be using illegal computer aids, colliding with Damon Hill's Williams after the German damaged his suspension hitting the wall.
Schumacher maintains it was a racing accident: just about everybody else, with the exception of the race stewards, Murray Walker and several million Germans, thinks it wasn't. Though what happened in Jerez three years later (see below) might have changed a few minds.
Schumacher lead the world championship by a single point from Hill going into the race, and as he limped back towards the pits after his mistake, Hill, a driver whom Schumacher had earlier that season described as "second rate", appeared in his mirrors before diving down the inside of the Flinders Street corner. Schumacher turned in, the cars collided, and despite being shunted off, the Benetton damaged the Williams sufficiently to force Hill to retire.

Restrained in his comments at the time, Hill has since been rather more expansive on his then rival. "A lot of people are interested only in victory, not necessarily how it is obtained. I believe Michael has taken a slightly cynical approach to the sport which has been bad for it."
4) Jerez 1997

Opinion is also divided about Schumacher's actions at the season-ending European GP three years later, except this time even the Germans aren't on his side. Actually, even Schumacher referred to it as a "misjudgement" on his part rather than a "racing incident".
Like Alonso in 2012, Schumacher's Ferrari was not as quick as the car of his leading opponent, in this case the Williams driven by Jacques Villeneuve. Schumi wrestled it into contention though, and once again lead the championship by a point going into the final race. He led until lap 48 when Villeneuve, coming from a long way back and clearly visible, shot up his inside. Again Schumacher turned in, but this time the Gods of motor racing had had enough. As Martin Brundle put it when commentating: "You hit the wrong part of the car, my friend."
Schumacher ended up in the gravel, while Villeneuve went on to finish third and in so doing secure the championship. The Italian newspaper L'Unita said Schumacher had covered himself, Ferrari and the sport in shame, but while he was stripped of his second place in the championship, instead of being banned, was told to take part in an FIA Safe Driving campaign. Which, if nothing else, showed that somebody at the FIA had a sense of humour.

"There's so many examples. One, Monaco qualifying. There's only one toilet in the garage and so he's in the toilet and I go down and it's 10 minutes before. I know that I have my two-minute session now for the last pee then jump in the car and go, qualifying.

"I knock on the door because it's always locked, 'Nico here, please let me in', because usually it's the mechanics who will then know in this moment I have to be the priority. No answer, nothing, so I'm knocking, knocking - no answer but I can hear that someone's in there.
"Here was Michael, in the toilet, leaning against the wall looking at his watch and he knew as long as he made it out with three minutes to go he could just about jump in the car, put the seat belts on and go before losing actual time and ruining the whole team strategy of qualifying.

"He's in there looking at his watch, chilling out, counting down, and I'm outside in full-panic mode because I can't go in qualifying with a full bladder, it absolutely sucks like anything.
"There's no options for me so I went for the oil bucket option in the corner. There was no option. Mechanics working and running around and I'm just there…

"I managed to do what I needed to do but the panic had such an impact with my qualifying. While I'm with my oil bucket, the door opens, Michael walks out and as soon as he leaves from the corner he starts walking faster because he knows it's like two seconds to go until qualifying.

"These games, all day long."
 

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For me it's Senna, Schumacher and Fangio, pick any order you want. Senna for sheer skill (watch the opening laps of Donnington 1993), Schumacher for his incredible consistency and Fangio for his unparalleled dominance, albeit with much shorter seasons and probably lesser competition.
Those who watched during the 60s will also tell you Jim Clark was as good a driver as any who ever lived, but he unfortunately he died before he could really put the runs on the board.

All that said, Hamilton is obviously an incredible driver, but that Mercedes is as good a car as I've ever seen over a 5+ year period. Not to mention that Hamilton was beaten several times by Button when paired up with him as well as by Rosberg in 2016. A wonderful driver indeed, but for me he's behind Senna, Schumacher and Fangio.
Senna arguably has the most myths and urban legends about his legacy and person out of all F1 drivers. This matter isn't helped by posterity either as he is still being hero-worshipped for mostly exaggerated reasons.

His drive at Donington Park back in 1993 is a prime example of the above. If you ask any casuals, they will most likely talk about that drive in superlatives. Where in reality, even Senna himself didn't consider that performance to be special: “People later said that my win in the wet at Donington in ’93 was my greatest performance. No way! I had traction control. OK, I didn’t make any real mistakes, but the car was so much easier to drive. It was a good win, sure, but compared with Estoril ’85 it was nothing, really.”

His drive in a turbocharged Lotus with no traction control at Estoril in 1985 was immensely more superior and impressive, all the more that it was his first-ever GP win. Yet, hardly anyone remembers or mentions that victory.

Another urban legend is that he was robbed at Monaco in 1984. Again, ask any casuals and they will say that how he flew in the wet, how he was faster than anyone and how the race was cruelly stopped to favour Prost before Senna could have won it fair and square. This, as always in such cases, couldn't be further from the truth.

For starters, since that race, the then-team principals of Toleman (Senna's team) revealed that Senna wouldn't have won anyway, since he damaged his suspension so badly a few laps earlier while jumping through the curb of the chicane after the tunnel that the suspension rod got cracked and would have snapped "in a lap or two". Secondly, the race was not stopped to favour Prost. Prost was a championship contender, Senna a rookie with only 2 points to his name at that point. Prost, who was struggling with the same brake issues that made Lauda spin and retire a few laps before, said straight after the race that he would have let Senna past. Senna was not a threat in the championship hence no concern for Prost as his main rival, Lauda had crashed out so it would not have been any point for Prost to try and fight Senna, a hot-headed rookie and risk scoring valuable points against Lauda as a result.

Thirdly, the real reason for the stoppage was much more complex than this piece of Senna mythology. What casual viewers don't remember is that Senna wasn't the fastest driver that day on the track - it was the brilliant German rookie, the 26-year-old Stefan Bellof. In fact, Bellof was catching both Senna and Prost at a faster rate than Senna was catching Prost - and all this while driving a Tyrrell, a car much slower even than Senna's Toleman.

Back in the day, F1 drivers were allowed to and often raced in other racing series too, especially young upstarts who needed to make a name for themselves. Bellof, beside his F1 activities, was also racing in the World Sportscar Championship between 1982 and 1985 where one of his teammates was Jacky Ickx, the former F1 driver. Ickx is a winner of 8 F1 GPs and was runner-up in both the 1969 and the 1970 F1 championships. In other words, Ickx was a famous and accomplished driver but arguably at the tail-end of his driving days at the age of 39 then. Bellof was starting to embarrass him more and more with his pace and results - after all, Belloff was just an upstart, driving in the WSC series for free whereas Ickx was a star driver, driving for a hefty paycheque. Ickx rightly presumed that it would look very bad on him if his driving-for-free, young WSC teammate suddenly won the Monaco Grand Prix as a rookie, driving a slow Tyrrell in the torrential rain. Bellof started dead last but by lap 27 he was already third so Ickx quickly decided to stop the race after only 31 laps lest Bellof climbs even higher in the order and challenges for the win.

Ickx red-flagged the race without consulting with any other race stewards or the race directors. When interrogated for this breach of rules, he tried to claim that he did it because Prost was driving a Porsche-powered car and he was driving a Porsche in the WSC series so he just wanted to make sure Porsche as a brand gets the coveted Monaco Grand Prix victory. This obviously didn't bode well in the motorsports community and Ickx was stripped of his race steward license - he would never attend at a Grand Prix in an official role ever again.
 

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Nope no one has challenged Hamilton from another team since the Mercedes dominance in 2014. Vettel had 2 seasons when the championship was close with a rival and Schumacher had 2 seasons when it was also close whilst at Ferrari.

Hamilton even started at McLaren in a potential championship winning car in 2007. Only because him and Alonso ** each other from winning the WC.
 

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Formula 1 is a team sport and this has been more and more apparent with teams growing to no end since the 2000's (and why the sport became a joke by the way).

It's more like Mercedes won the championship, with Lewis Hamilton as a driver.
 

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I grew up watching Formula 1 with my dad and we were rooting for Michael since the Benetton days. There's no doubt Hamilton is a great talent, but what sets the two apart for me is their non-championship-winning seasons. Some great seasons there, some great drama, especially in the early Ferrari years, with 2006 a good one to cap it all off.

Ferrari was only as dominant as MGP is in years like 2001, 2002 and 2004 - as opposed to the seven straight year's we've had of Silver Arrow dominance, during which they were only challenged for half a season in 2017 and 2018 - interestingly, seasons in which Hamilton really showed his quality under pressure. More of that would do his legacy good.

There is often talk about how important Schumacher was to Ferrari's improved fortunes, leaving as world champion to a middling team. His presence revitalized Ferrari and allowed it to build around him, making them spectacular to watch even when winning titles was still three years away. Hamilton arrived at MGP in 2013, when much of the heavy lifting had been done, the team was on track to get the powerhouse engine that their success was built upon a year later.

As for Michael's unsporting moments, he was a product of his time, with plenty examples to draw inspiration from in the 80s and early 90s. I rather enjoy this complexity, nobody's perfect and seeing how that affects someone is a fascinating thing. Would he take back Jerez 97, Monaco 06, Hungary 10? I think he hasn't been apologetic about any of them and probably we won't have the chance to find out if he truly regrets those decisions.

Formula 1 has changed a lot in my short 25 years of watching it, so I can only imagine how this must all look to those with even more backstory. I'll always treasure the 90s and 00s, with the 10s leaving me more dejected, but I have no idea whether that's because of something truly objective. The sound and feeling of that V10, oh man.
 
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