Schumacher's titles won with help says Herbert

Schumacher's titles won with help says Herbert

Former Formula One driver Johnny Herbert has slated Michael Schumacher for accepting team orders and believes three of the German's world championship titles were won by help from others. Herbert, who finished second for Audi at Sears Point last...

Former Formula One driver Johnny Herbert has slated Michael Schumacher for accepting team orders and believes three of the German's world championship titles were won by help from others. Herbert, who finished second for Audi at Sears Point last weekend in ALMS, thinks Schumacher has tarnished his reputation with his actions this year.

Johnny Herbert.
Photo by Michael C. Johnson.
"In Michael's position I would never behave as he does because I would never feel that I had properly won the world title," he said in the British press. "At least three of his four world titles have been won with help. I don't remember Ayrton Senna or Alain Prost ever needing anything like that."

"It's the absolute worst. I don't know how he can do it. I don't know how he can feel he's really world champion, although I'm sure he will be champion again this year. The whole point of racing is that the best man wins. But it's naive to believe that nowadays because the best man isn't winning."

"Michael has tarnished his reputation and the value of the championship. He has won by batting down his team mate and it's not the first time he's done it. This year at the San Marino Grand Prix he took Rubens's car when Rubens was quicker than him before qualifying. Michael has never had to address the very first challenge a driver faces, which is beating the only guy in the same machinery."

Herbert was Schumacher's team mate at Benetton in 1995 and has first hand experience of what it's like to partner the current champion: "I know what it's like to be Michael's team mate," he added. "When I joined Michael at Benetton the team had just won the world title and I thought it was an opportunity for me to do the same. So I said publicly I wanted to win the world title. But when Michael was asked about that he said I was 'getting political'."

"That was when the problems began. At the Argentinian Grand Prix all Michael's data was taken away after practice so that I couldn't look at it and get the benefit. He saw mine, of course. Refusing to let me see his was something he asked for and the team agreed to it. The team shouldn't allow it. Ordering Rubens to give way wasn't fair. If he'd refused, I'm sure they'd have got rid of him. The silly part is he doesn't need to do it this way. He's only damaging himself."

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Johnny Herbert , Michael Schumacher , Alain Prost , Ayrton Senna
Teams Benetton