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Formula 1

Secret Diary of Michael Schumacher: Part 46

Thursday August 25 2005

46: Part Sechs und Vierzig: Istanbul

In this, his secret diary, Planet-F1 readers can find out what really goes on behind that cool, detached exterior.

I have to tell you my tifosi chums, I believe it is now impossible.

Turkey proved to me that it cannot be done, it is too much to expect and that we will have to wait for another season. We were all expecting the very high temperatures in Istanbul and at last the chance to see Jean Todt remove his Ferrari woolly jumper. But no, all he did was unzip it a little bit. The next big test for it will not be until Malaysia 2006.

Many people are asking me already what I am thinking about Felipe Massa and if he is good enough to drive for Ferrari. This is putting me in a difficult position and I have to say something nice.

So I decided to brainstorm some ideas that I could give the TV and press without becoming a liar. I am including them below, along with Sabine’s copmments.

  1. Peter Sauber says he is not too bad at breaking cars any more. (“Come on, you can do better than this.”)
  2. He is smaller than me, so I know he will fit into the car next year. (“Better, but still not very good.”)
  3. His girlfriend is really young and sexy and will add glamour to our garage (“It’s true, but you cannot say it, otherwise it makes you look like a randy old man. Like Alain Prost”)
  4. Because he is so short, when I stand next to him I will look tall – as I have done with Rubens. (“It needs to be about how good he is, not how good he makes you look!”)
  5. It is good to have another Brazilian in the team for a sense of continuity. (“That will have to do.”)

Some of you might have noticed stories of me going to visit Norbert Haug of the Mercedes motorsport and will be thinking, ‘That Schu, he is a wily badger and is about to jump aboard the McLaren ship’. This is certainly nowhere near anything of the truth of the situation.

I have been a friend of Norbert’s for many years and we are often swapping amusing stories we have heard about Ron Dennis. Willi Webber my manager also loves to come along for a small beer and a Ron joke.

Such as:
How many Ron Dennis’s does it take to change a lightbulb?
Answer: We don’t have a serious problem with the lightbulb

Quite honestly and obviously Willi brings his lawyer everywhere with him and so just because the four of us are sharing a small beer together, along with briefcases and stuff you are normally carrying around for business meetings, there is nothing unusual going on.

In Turkey we had a complete lack of pace which was very frustrating, but not as bad as being hit by a guy you have lapped. It seems now that whenever I overtake a backmarker I am going to have to look in the mirrors to check that he is not diving up the inside for a bit of fun. I have a lot of respect for Mark Webber but to use a typical Ozzie phrase – “he is bang out of the order, mate”.

With these annoying qualifying rules you cannot even retire the car and be early slipping off to the airport like in the past. No, you have to hang around for the mechanics to fix it again and then go out to claim a joyful 17th place.

Still, it could be worse, I could be Takuma Sato. He cannot do anything in the car himself without Jock Clear telling him to do it. At the start they are telling him of the cars coming either side of him into the first corner. On the Qualifying lap he needs telling there is a car behind him. I bet they even tell him when to fart in the cockpit. This, I think he would be able to manage without going off the road.

Our next race is the glorious homecoming of Monza. I cannot promise you a Ferrari 1-2 this year but it is my aim to be on the podium, even if I have to go on there after everyone has gone home.

Love and Stuff
The Schum

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Disclaimer: I am not the author, but have archived these entries for posterity as I felt that they were so well written by "Michael Schumacher" for Planet-F1 (who have removed almost all of the originals from their website).