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Schumacher's 1998 Belgian GP Drama
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Schumacher’s 1998 Belgian GP Fury: A Deep Dive

28/01/2024

Exploring Michael Schumacher‘s most intense moment at the 1998 Belgian Grand Prix, this piece delves into the dramatic incident with David Coulthard that marked a significant point in Formula 1 history.

Michael Schumacher’s worst outburst in Formula 1 was undoubtedly at the 1998 Belgian Grand Prix, when David Coulthard slowed down in front of him in the rain, causing an accident and ending the German’s race. Ralf Schumacher, interviewed by Eddie Jordan in the Formula For Success podcast, recounts the incident.

“I remember seeing the scene,” Ralf said, wishing his brother could speak about it. “It’s very tough. We miss a part that could still talk or respond to that. It was something very special. But it could have been very dangerous.”

“Fortunately, it was wet, because on a dry track, it could have been more dangerous. At that moment, emotions make you see things differently. I think that’s something all of us who’ve been in a car know.”

“Flavio, with his cap on backward, smoking in the pits. Eddie, you were jumping in the pit lane… I think Formula 1 was much more alive back then. Emotions were allowed. It’s a part of Formula 1 history.”

Michael played the role of “big brother”

Jordan continued, mentioning that Schumacher later got angry with him for issuing a team order ensuring Damon Hill’s victory over Ralf: “DC hid in the motorhome, understandably, with his helmet.”

“Suddenly, Michael lashed out at me! Throughout the years he tried to help you, he never really got involved. Suddenly, when he had a chance to win this race, he got mad at me. Why?”

Ralf then explained to Jordan: “He’s my big brother and he thought this race was for me. Do you remember the radio conversation? Damon doesn’t! No matter… We talked after the race. He was kind of my manager at the time, to be honest. Without Michael, I wouldn’t be here.”

“Michael thought he was part of a conspiracy”

David Coulthard recalls Schumacher’s anger, believing himself to be the victim of orchestrated help for Mika Häkkinen: “Michael thought it was part of a plot to help my teammate Mika. It was just an accident. Just one of those things that happen.”

“I wouldn’t be honest if I didn’t admit he was a great driver, but from my point of view, there were some drawbacks to Michael’s approach of winning at all costs.”

“I have no problem acknowledging that I raced against the man who rewrote the history books. He’s the most successful man in our sport’s history.”

“My understanding of the limit might be closer to other drivers’. He could be very ruthless, cold, distant. I think that’s probably what you need at this level to succeed to such an extent.”

Michael Schumacher’s 1998 Belgian GP Drama. Michael Schumacher’s 1998 Belgian GP Drama

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