Michael Schumacher is perhaps one of the greatest drivers to have graced Formula 1. Not only was the German an extremely talented sportsperson, his affable personality made him a crowd favourite.
With that, comes the power to make certain changes in the sport that would not be possible without you. One such instance involves his brother Ralf, who has admitted that had it not have been for Michael, he would never have made it to Formula 1.
Ralf was a pretty good F1 driver and had a few impressive seasons in the sport as well. While he was never in the title runnings, he was a solid driver.
Some have suggested that Ralf never really got the credit he deserved, largely due to the fact that he was always overshadowed by his brother’s achievements and aura in the sport.
However, Ralf himself does not look at things in that way. He argues that without Michael, he may never have made it to the top level anyway.
“Without Michael and our joint manager Willi Weber, I might never have ended up in Formula 1,” Ralf said.
“You have to be that honest. They opened doors for me, of course. And that already in the junior formulas.
“Would I have ended up in the Opel Formula 3 works team without my brother? Hardly likely.”
Ralf was quick to point out that while he did get the opportunity through his contacts, it was eventually on him to perform and make it count.
He believes that his results in the junior categories were enough to secure him a seat on merit.
“I then had to perform. I won the race in Macau, which is known as the F3 World Championship. I won the hard-fought Formula 3000 championship in Japan in 1996, which was not easy for a foreigner,” he said.
“So I took the chance that I was given and I think that was why I deserved my entry into Formula 1 because of my performance. But unfortunately, not everyone could understand.”
Ralf suggested that while his nephew Mick had trouble on his debut race in Formula 1, he should not look to put too much pressure on himself.
Son of Michael Schumacher, Mick will be keen to ensure that he can gain as much experience as possible over the course of the season.