Returning Heroes And Other Stories

10 01 2010

Schumacher Returns

There have been plenty of occasions in the history of professional sport where an erstwhile champion attempts a comeback, often with mixed results. Without a doubt there have been successful and sometimes career defining moments following these. Unfortunately, more often than not, the ex-champion is reminded exactly why he is an ‘ex’ and with reputation tarnished and ego bruised they slip back into the relative obscurity of their post playing career.

Michael Schumacher is in a unique position however amongst the pantheon of sporting gods who have or are attempting a comeback. Most sportsmen and women retire because they feel their faculties dimming, the reactions slowing and performance levels that much harder to maintain. This was not the case with Schumacher who was still at the pinnacle of F1 when he retired. It is probable that he will be rusty at the beginning of the season but it is more than likely that by the end of the season, fitness and car permitting, he will be challenging once more for the title.

Leadership & Briatore

With the news that the FIA’s ban on Flavio Briatore has been lifted F1 has found itself plunged into yet another controversy that it could do without. Apparently the ban was lifted on legal technicalities as the FIA did not follow due process in the hearing and astonishingly did not have the jurisdiction to give the bans in the first place. Neither Briatore or Pat Symonds had a FIA license and therefore were not subject to the FIA’s rules. I cannot think of another professional sport’s governing body which doesn’t have the ability to lay down the law to the people involved in said sport.

This is just another example of how poorly run the sport of F1 is and former FIA President Max Mosely, one of the prime movers for the prosecution in this case should be held to account.

It is also distasteful to see Briatore loudly proclaiming the injustice of the whole affair and promising to sue almost everyone in the racing world. When the allegations broke both Symonds and Briatore resigned within 5 days before the judgement was due which is hardly a statement of innocence. Briatore has never officially owned up or denied to what happened although the Symonds has said he will have ‘eternal regret and shame’ for his involvement in the race fixing affair. It seems clear that he is guilty and should therefore simply be grateful that the FIA at this moment in time are unable to make any ban stick against him.

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2 responses

11 01 2010
Stridey

Schumacher returns – Some fantastic news for all F1 fans. I completely agree with you Bradders in that Shcumacher will be challenging for the title this coming season, fitness, car and luck permitting. To anyone that says luck doesnt come into it, tell that to Felipe Massa after this seasons incident at the Hungaroring. Schumacher may be the among the more mature of drivers currently on the grid but is this a bad point? Some think so, saying that his reactions will not be up to scratch but nobody said the same of Rubens Barrichello who last season was challenging for the title and has easilly secured a seat at williams for 2010. Is Michael fearfull of young talent? Is that why he pulled out when he did? In my opinion no, he battled with young upcoming talent throughout his career and im sure would not have been detered by the likes of a spritely Lewis Hamilton. I say good luck to Michael.
Briatore – The less said about this guy the better. Jurisdiction or no jurisdiction the ban should stand. I agree that Max Mosely should be held responsible and just hope that Jean Todt can do a better job. Flavio, as you said, should be pleased to get off so lightly and if he is threatening legal proceedings against the governing body to try to prove some kind of inocence, then in my opinion its too late. His actions at the time were those of a guilty man and that says it all.
The FIA had alot to deal with last season what with FOTA and the budget and possible break away episode but for the sake of the sport I hope the FIA tighten it up and take a hold of their responsibilities.

11 01 2010
Bradders

I agree Stridey. I don’t think Schumi is going to harm his reputation by coming back to F1 and in fact could add to it. There has always been question marks over his sportsmanship and this is one area when with the stakes being relatively low he could improve on.

Either way it’ll be interesting!

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