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Ralf Schumacher leaves Toyota


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#1 pacificquay

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 12:41

Ralf Schumacher says on his website he will not be driving for Toyota next season.

Is this the end of his F1 career?

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#2 Gecko

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 12:42

One would sure hope so

#3 wingwalker

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 12:44

how surprising. :rolleyes: i don't think he has any chances of finding a drive for 2008.

#4 Timstr11

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 12:45

Originally posted by pacificquay
Ralf Schumacher says on his website he will not be driving for Toyota next season.

Is this the end of his F1 career?

Jeez , why not put up the link straight away!?
http://www.ralf-schu...e/news/365.html.

#5 Orin

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 12:50

I personally won't miss him, I don't pay any attention to him anyway. If he frees a seat up, perhaps Piquet will replace him and Toyota will gain a driver with a bit of ambition. I don't really like Piquet but at least no one will accuse him of simply driving for the lifestyle benefits.

#6 glorius&victorius

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 12:50

Interesting that 1 year after his incredible Super-Brother left the scene, Ralf could leave F1.
.. is it then true that he was in F1 because of the Schumacher - label :lol:

#7 pkenny

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 12:51

I noticed that yesterday he parked his car but was then sent back out, this might have been the camel that broke the straw's back.

#8 Timstr11

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 12:52

Originally posted by Orin
I personally won't miss him, I don't pay any attention to him anyway. If he frees a seat up, perhaps Piquet will replace him and Toyota will gain a driver with a bit of ambition. I don't really like Piquet but at least no one will accuse him of simply driving for the lifestyle benefits.

You think Briatore will park Piquet there?
I think Toyota will take Timo Glock.

#9 BorderReiver

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 12:57

He's got the McLaren seat ;) .

#10 Orin

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:00

Originally posted by Timstr11
You think Briatore will park Piquet there?
I think Toyota will take Timo Glock.


I feel that Piquet might be a bit too abrasive to fit in alongside many drivers, but he's good enough to warrant a race seat. If Briatore wants a number two, then Piquet doesn't fit the bill, nor does he fit in at Williams or McLaren, but Toyota might be willing to take the gamble. Is Glock's reputation higher than Piquet's? Certainly many commentators have suggested this year's GP2 field is a lot weaker than last year's, to be honest I've not followed GP2 this year.

#11 kismet

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:01

Ooh, the first 25 % of team kismet bites the dust. I may need to find a new loser to adopt now. Damn and blast.

#12 clampett

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:03

Originally posted by glorius&victorius
Interesting that 1 year after his incredible Super-Brother left the scene, Ralf could leave F1.
.. is it then true that he was in F1 because of the Schumacher - label :lol:


Actually he was a very good driver before 2004. Don't deny those races becuase of his slump at Toyota.

#13 jcbc3

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:05

Williams seat beckons?

They were VERY appreciative of Ralfs technical feed-back and have their hot shoe in Rosberg. The perfect fit.

#14 pistonfree

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:06

The same day as this?
http://www.autosport...rt.php/id/62925

Expect to him in a McLaren next year ;)

#15 Timstr11

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:06

Originally posted by Orin


I feel that Piquet might be a bit too abrasive to fit in alongside many drivers, but he's good enough to warrant a race seat. If Briatore wants a number two, then Piquet doesn't fit the bill, nor does he fit in at Williams or McLaren, but Toyota might be willing to take the gamble. Is Glock's reputation higher than Piquet's? Certainly many commentators have suggested this year's GP2 field is a lot weaker than last year's, to be honest I've not followed GP2 this year.

Well, as far as I am concerned Alonso can go to Toyota and re-unite with Trulli :p

#16 pacificquay

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:06

Originally posted by BorderReiver
He's got the McLaren seat ;) .


Ridiculous as it may seem, I think there is actually a possibility of that.

#17 holiday

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:06

Originally posted by glorius&victorius
Interesting that 1 year after his incredible Super-Brother left the scene, Ralf could leave F1.
.. is it then true that he was in F1 because of the Schumacher - label :lol:


You must have missed the 1999 season...

#18 KWSN - DSM

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:08

Originally posted by jcbc3
Williams seat beckons?

They were VERY appreciative of Ralfs technical feed-back and have their hot shoe in Rosberg. The perfect fit.


I concur.

And I continue to be questioning if the posters of this board see the same F1 races as I do.

Ralf have been the better of the two Toyota drivers in 2006 and 2005. The car this season is a true lemon, and only Trulli's amazing qualifying prowess have enabled him to be seen as 'better' than Ralf.

Ralf Schumacher is a top 10 F1 driver, and he should get a seat somewhere.

:cool:

#19 santori

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:10

I'm one of those who think Ralf is unfairly maligned. I get the feeling he's a bit too bright for his own happiness in F1. Not that the best drivers aren't bright, but Ralf gives me the impression of wondering if it isn't all a lot of nonsense, like Niki Lauda before he retired (both times). High intelligence seems to be useful when drivers are focused on winning but it also leaves them open to all sorts of doubts.
Perhaps he'll be better off out of F1 (or maybe he'll find another seat and revitalise his career).

I'd like Montagny to take the Toyota drive.

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#20 F1 Tor.

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:10

Originally posted by pacificquay


Ridiculous as it may seem, I think there is actually a possibility of that.


because........? :wave:

#21 jcbc3

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:12

Originally posted by jcbc3
Williams seat beckons?

They were VERY appreciative of Ralfs technical feed-back and have their hot shoe in Rosberg. The perfect fit.


:drunk: Maybe I should read before posting.

..Aber nun ist es Zeit, etwas Neues auszuprobieren!"...



that should rule the Williams seat out.

#22 Calorus

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:14

Originally posted by glorius&victorius
Interesting that 1 year after his incredible Super-Brother left the scene, Ralf could leave F1.
.. is it then true that he was in F1 because of the Schumacher - label :lol:


In fairness, he's leaving late by F1 standards. Equally, over a season he's normally fairly mediocre. Even if he could be as spectactular as anyone over a lap. It's long overdue, one way, or the other.

#23 noikeee

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:16

Originally posted by jcbc3


:drunk: Maybe I should read before posting.



that should rule the Williams seat out.


If the babelfish translator is right, that means "it's time to try something else now". DTM maybe? I can see that meaning he's going out of F1.

So who'll get the Toyota seat?

Fernando Alonso?
Franck Montagny?
Timo Glock?
Kazuki Nakajima?
Nelson Piquet Jr?
Adrian Sutil?
Nico Rosberg?

I'm leaning towards Glock or Nakajima.

#24 MichaelJP

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:17

I think most people would acknowledge Ralf is a good F1 driver, certainly in the top 20, just that his talent does not justify his vast salary. Maybe at 10% of his current fee he'd be a good buy.

#25 Orin

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:17

Originally posted by Timstr11
Well, as far as I am concerned Alonso can go to Toyota and re-unite with Trulli :p


Then Trulli can beat him properly without having to deal with Briatore's voodoo tricks! :lol:

#26 noikeee

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:22

Originally posted by MichaelJP
I think most people would acknowledge Ralf is a good F1 driver, certainly in the top 20, just that his talent does not justify his vast salary. Maybe at 10% of his current fee he'd be a good buy.


Yes, it would be interesting to see what he could do in a new environment (another F1 team), but he's not a future WDC prospect anymore, I'd be happy to see someone jumping from GP2 or another lower series, to take his place in the F1 grid.

However let's not forget that next season F1 has 24 seats instead of 22, of course there are always many more drivers interested in those seats that are currently outside of F1, but this means there is more space for negotiations, and if Ralf hasn't completely given up on F1 (and is willing to take a paycut), he can still get a drive.

Is Prodrive too unlikely for Ralf? They've stated they want an experienced driver - I'm guessing they were going to go with De La Rosa for that spot, but after Stepney-gate De La Rosa's chances could've been hurt.

#27 MichaelJP

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:32

Prodrive might be an option - though if I was any team manager employing Ralf I'd make his package 90% results dependent, after all he is somewhat prone to sulking.

#28 KWSN - DSM

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:39

Originally posted by paranoik0


Yes, it would be interesting to see what he could do in a new environment (another F1 team), but he's not a future WDC prospect anymore, I'd be happy to see someone jumping from GP2 or another lower series, to take his place in the F1 grid.

However let's not forget that next season F1 has 24 seats instead of 22, of course there are always many more drivers interested in those seats that are currently outside of F1, but this means there is more space for negotiations, and if Ralf hasn't completely given up on F1 (and is willing to take a paycut), he can still get a drive.

Is Prodrive too unlikely for Ralf? They've stated they want an experienced driver - I'm guessing they were going to go with De La Rosa for that spot, but after Stepney-gate De La Rosa's chances could've been hurt.


I would like to keep him in F1, almost regardless of where. Coulthard was considered 'gone' after McLaren and he seem to be thriving at Red Bull, consistently showing the youngsters they threw at him, that there is more to F1, than just being able to drive a car.

What ever Ralf makes 1 Usd or 10000 million Usd, can not be a reason to dislike him. No team sign a contract with a driver without knowing what they are paying them.

Good for Ralf that he could make as much as he did. Can not be a reason to like or dislike a driver.

:cool:

#29 kar

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:41

Wouldn't it be deliciously ironic for Schumacher to be racing for McLaren the year when one Mr Bishop is responsible for PR.... :rotfl:

#30 Buttoneer

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:42

I bet he's more unhappy than this.

Going to miss his rubber-like face. He is the Rowan Atkinson of F1. Or maybe that should be Mr Bean?

#31 fnz

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:52

I won't miss him, that's for sure.

#32 Hacklerf

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 13:59

His surname is Schumacher so i wouldn't be surprised if he did manage to pull off an F1 drive for next year.

#33 glorius&victorius

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 14:00

Originally posted by BorderReiver
He's got the McLaren seat ;) .


That must be it!!!

Read between the lines... (www.autosport.com)

***
"I joined Toyota with high expectations," said Schumacher.

"On the one hand, I regarded it as a major and exciting challenge to be involved in the development of a new racing car. On the other hand, I also learned to like the Japanese style of living, during my long stay in Japan before entering Formula One. And I still get on well with the Japanese mentality.

"But I am waiting for years for a competitive car."
***

:lol: Funny Ralf... probably the only team that will want him is Spyker

#34 kar

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 14:43

Who knows, but I bet he's gutted having gotten rid of Willi.

#35 ensign14

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 14:47

Originally posted by jcbc3
Williams seat beckons?

They were VERY appreciative of Ralfs technical feed-back and have their hot shoe in Rosberg. The perfect fit.

Interviews in the motoring media since then were not exactly appreciative of his attitude.

#36 denthierry

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 14:52

Originally posted by Buttoneer
I bet he's more unhappy than this.

Going to miss his rubber-like face. He is the Rowan Atkinson of F1. Or maybe that should be Mr Bean?


are you sure that's not michael on that picture? Looks damn much like him.
;)

#37 Louis Mr. F1

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 14:56

guys, Ralf is definitely one of the top 22 F1 drivers ..... my preference is to see Timo Glock in the other Toyota.

#38 Mauseri

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 15:04

Ralf might be able to buy the Spyker seat...

#39 femi

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 15:11

I think he is off to Williams.

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#40 djellison

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 15:15

Toyota have spent so much building a car, and pay Ralf such a huge ammount - it must be a real effort to spend all that money and achieve 4/5ths of 9/10ths of 'F' all.

Never liked Ralf's attitude - never been impressed by his performances on the track ( trying to hump a Spyker in qualifying was inspired ). Maybe a testing role with someone for a few years (P d l R style) but I'd rather a new young talent (and we have a lot of it around waiting in the wings) got the spare seat his departure leaves.
Doug

#41 kodandaram

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 15:16

I won't miss Ralf - that is for sure . He is a very bland character and most of the times in recent times , a very unimpressive driver also . But he has some class - he showed plenty of it during his Williams days and also on occasion during his stint at Toyota . Experience will help .

I can imagine a team like Spyker would be glad to have him but a small problem is that Vijay Mallya wants an Indian driver - read Narain - in the F1 seat . The other seat is almost surely given to Sutil . If they have not yet signed Sutil - that is just unbelievable. Or , if sutil has signed for toyota then that is a very good move for him . He deserves it .

Either way , this to me looks like the same situation Jacques Villeneuve faced after leaving BAR . Big name under performing driver looking for a drive but nobody who runs a competitive team is interested . Will he swallow his pride and accept an offer at a smaller team ? I don't feel so .

BTW about Williams - I think they don't have much to lose between Wurz and Ralf. Both are about equal overall even if they have different strengths and weaknesses. Come to think of it , a One year deal for Ralf at Williams might not be bad but there has been a lot of bad blood between the snr mgmt and Ralf since he left ...so god knows..

#42 Bruce

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 15:46

I loved his quote "I was hoping for a more competitive car"
:lol:

I think that Toyota were hoping for a more competitive driver...

#43 Gilles4Ever

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 15:53

Originally posted by Bruce
I loved his quote "I was hoping for a more competitive car"
:lol:

I think that Toyota were hoping for a more competitive driver...


I dont think Alonso, Raikkonen, Hamilton or anyone else would have been competitive in any of the Toyotas Ralf drove.

He has been outperformed by Trulli, but if he had a car as competitive as the Williams he drove, he would have won races. If Toyota hadn't re-signed trulli I dont think he would have had a drive anywhere else either, it is the nature of the beast.

I dont think there were too many that didn't expect Toyota to be competitive when Ralf and Tulli joined them.

Toyota can hardly say the were hoping for a more competitive driver - they produced dog cars that no one could have won in!

Has anyone had a career in F1 after being at Toyota?

#44 HoldenRT

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 16:03

Originally posted by Gilles4Ever


I dont think Alonso, Raikkonen, Hamilton or anyone else would have been competitive in any of the Toyotas Ralf drove.

He has been outperformed by Trulli, but if he had a car as competitive as the Williams he drove, he would have won races. If Toyota hadn't re-signed trulli I dont think he would have had a drive anywhere else either, it is the nature of the beast.

I dont think there were too many that didn't expect Toyota to be competitive when Ralf and Tulli joined them.

Toyota can hardly say the were hoping for a more competitive driver - they produced dog cars that no one could have won in!

Has anyone had a career in F1 after being at Toyota?

I don't understand your perspective talking about wins. The only people that expect all of the drivers to win are ones that don't understand the sport, or don't follow it etc.

In a season there is usually only 4 drivers that have machinery capable of winning. The rest are left to battle it out between themselves, and try and impress with their performances. Whether that be someone like Sato or Sutil stealing 8th place and a point or someone like Nico getting lots of 7th places.

The point is impressing with good performances, not winning. And Ralf failed. You can be in a Spyker or STR and still impress like Vettel did. Ralf failed. And from 2005 to now, he's got progressively worse and worse. The number of times he missed Q2 in the last 2 seasons, the amount of silly incidents, he did have a couple good drives but they were so rare. Probably only 2-3 in the last 2 years. Even in 05 in those first few races where Trulli got 2nd places, Ralf was nowhere in comparison. I don't care about his salary his performances were flat out dissappointing, alot worse then Fisi.

#45 Bruce

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 16:10

Originally posted by Gilles4Ever



Toyota can hardly say the were hoping for a more competitive driver - they produced dog cars that no one could have won in!


Given the amount of money that Toyota were paying him, I think that they could have expected a competitive driver - instead, they got someone who had great difficulty beating his vastly less well-paid team-mate.

If Ralfie's career is over, he has no one to blame but himself. He signed with them, knowing what the team was, and he took their money without complaint.

#46 Sakae

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 16:12

Is this a true end of Schumacher' Dynasty? Perhaps. I admit that Ralf struggled, and not too many bothered to find out underlying causes of his problems. In fact level of nastiness precipitating various boards are just too much. If he leaves, not a big deal, but just from respect to his brother, I will somewhat miss him. Lets hope he will find something else to do.

#47 brunopascal

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 16:16

Good for Toyota that Ralf is leaving, he's been underperforming for long now.

Originally posted by Gilles4Ever

I dont think Alonso, Raikkonen, Hamilton or anyone else would have been competitive in any of the Toyotas Ralf drove.

Had it been Alonso in Toyota instead in 2005, he could probably have won 1 or 2 races. The car was pretty competitive in some races that year.

#48 Bruce

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 16:19

I should get out my old magazines and find the article where that twit Peter Windsor suggested that between them the Schumacher brothers would win 12 or 13 WDC....

:lol:

Can't complain about Michael - he did his bit, didn't he?

#49 doggy

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 16:29

Originally posted by santori
I'm one of those who think Ralf is unfairly maligned. I get the feeling he's a bit too bright for his own happiness in F1. Not that the best drivers aren't bright, but Ralf gives me the impression of wondering if it isn't all a lot of nonsense, like Niki Lauda before he retired (both times). High intelligence seems to be useful when drivers are focused on winning but it also leaves them open to all sorts of doubts.
Perhaps he'll be better off out of F1 (or maybe he'll find another seat and revitalise his career).

I'd like Montagny to take the Toyota drive.


I agree with this assessment.

IMO, Ralf and Trulli are much better drivers than they are given credits for. I would go as far as saying that the pair actually inflate the Toyota machines. That's how big a dog that car is. Plugging in most other F1 drivers in the field, the team would perform about as well as STA or Super Aguri. I could totally understand if Ralf or Trulli have occasionally lost motivations ... they can't expect to be in such a dog of a car for 3 years running, during their career primes.

#50 WACKO

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Posted 01 October 2007 - 16:59

Hmm a competitive car ey? That means he'll be out of F1 next year, because no way he is going to get a competitive F1 cockpit.