A Glimpse at the Life of Formula One Racer Ralf Schmacher - VIDEO FEATURE


PHOTO (select to view enlarged photo)
Click PLAY button below to watch video feature

EDITOR'S NOTE: There are two videos embeded on this page.

COLOGNE - July 27, 2007: Ralf grew up in Kerpen, Germany, just a few miles from the Panasonic Toyota Racing’s factory in Cologne. He started riding karts when he was two, raced in club championships by the age of five, and made his Formula 1 debut 10 years ago, challenging his brother, Michael, on the race track. Ralf stood on the podium in his third Formula 1 race, and has won six Grand Prix since. Away from the race track, Ralf is involved in charity work, including Stella Deetjen’s action for children of leprosy sufferers in Varanasi, India.

Background

PHOTO (select to view enlarged photo)
Click on PLAY button below to watch Ralf's pre-season interview from Cologne, Germany
From his early days in karting Ralf Schumacher proved to be a talent and that became obvious when he moved to cars, paving the way for a long and successful career in Formula 1

His single-seater career showed all the signs of future stardom. He won the prestigious Macau Grand Prix Formula Three race in 1995, and then took the Formula Nippon title in Japan the following year.

He made his Formula 1 debut with Jordan in the 1997 Australian Grand Prix, which was also the first start for current team-mate Jarno Trulli. Incredibly, Ralf was on the podium in just his third Grand Prix when he finished third in Argentina, but that remained the best result of a tumultuous debut season.

In 1998 a difficult start to the campaign was rectified by mid-season changes to the car. He finished a close second to team-mate Damon Hill at Spa, and took third place at Monza.

A move to Williams in 1999 saw the start of what turned out to be a six-year stint with the team. In the first season with Supertec power Ralf proved to be something of a revelation as a consistent points gatherer, finishing in the top five no fewer than 11 times. The highlight was a second place at Monza.

In 2000 Williams began a new relationship with BMW. Ralf finished third in the new combo’s first race in Australia, and went on to score two more podiums in the first season on his way to fourth in the championship. At the following year’s San Marino GP Ralf scored the first win for both himself and BMW Williams, later adding two further successes in Canada and Hockenheim. Once again he finished fourth in the championship.

He repeated that result in 2002, but in a year dominated by Ferrari his only win came in the Malaysian GP. In 2003 he added two more wins to his growing CV at the Nurburgring and Magny-Cours, and this time finished fifth in the championship. After a difficult start to 2004 a heavy crash in the US GP sidelined him for much of the rest of the season. During his convalescence he was announced as a Toyota driver for 2005 and beyond.

He was passed fit to return to the last three races, making a point by qualifying and finishing second in Japan. He left the team at the end of 2004 having scored six wins and taken five pole positions. He had spent four years of his six years as team-mate to Juan Pablo Montoya, and overall the pair proved to be very evenly matched.

PHOTO (select to view enlarged photo)
Ralf gets advice from team engineer Francesco Nenci
Inevitably it took Ralf sometime to find his feet in his new environment at Panasonic Toyota Racing, and Trulli often got the better of him in qualifying. However, he impressed the team with his tenacity in races. He finished fifth on his second outing in Malaysia, and was fourth in Bahrain. Fortunately another accident at Indianapolis, again a result of a tyre failure, was not as serious as the first. He bounced back to take his first Toyota podium with third place in Hungary.

At the last two races Ralf found the revised TF105B more suited to his driving style. He took a superb pole position in Japan, and picked up another third place in the season finale in China. In total he finished in the points 13 times in 18 starts, and took an encouraging sixth place in the World Championship.

The 2006 season proved to be less rewarding for Toyota, but Ralf scored an early third place after a superb drive in Australia. He finished in the points on six other occasions, including a fourth in France, to secure 10th place in the championship. He also qualified an excellent third in Japan. ."

Pre-2007 Season Interview

Home | Buyers Guides By Make | New Car Buyers Guide | Used Car Super Search | Total New Car Costs | New Car and Truck Reviews
Automotive News | TACH-TV | Media Library | Discount Auto Parts

Copyright © 1996-2014 The Auto Channel. Contact Information, Credits, and Terms of Use. These following titles and media identification are Trademarks owned by The Auto Channel, LLC and have been in continuous use since 1987 : The Auto Channel, Auto Channel and TACH all have been in continuous use world wide since 1987, in Print, TV, Radio, Home Video, Newsletters, On-line, and other interactive media; all rights are reserved and infringement will be acted upon with force.

Privacy Statement | Size Does Matter | Media Kit | XML SITE MAP | Affiliates

Send your questions, comments, and suggestions to Editor-in-Chief@theautochannel.com.

Submit Company releases or Product News stories to submit@theautochannel.com.
Place copy in body of email, NO attachments please.

To report errors and other problems with this page, please use this form.

Link to this page: http://www.theautochannel.com/