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Don't compare me with Fangio, Schumacher says 05 Mar 2003

Michael Schumacher (GER) took victory in the first race for the Ferrari F2002.
Brazilian Grand Prix, Interlagos, 31 March 2002

Despite their record of five world championships apiece, Michael Schumacher is loathe to be compared with the legendary Juan Manuel Fangio.

"What Fangio has done in his time is not comparable to what we do," the German says. "I think that the effort he had to put in at the time was probably a lot more than being just a driver in these days, where you have so many people around you, where you have a lot more teamwork than you had in the past. I feel it is not appropriate to compare these things, at least from my point of view, and I simply enjoy the achievement myself witho0ut trying to compare it to someone."

Of course, the sport has changed so much in the intervening 45 years since Fangio's last title in 1957 - cars, technology, safety, remuneration to name just a few factors - but the statistics are interesting. Fangio had won 24 races from 51 starts, a 47 percent strike rate, while Schumacher's strike rate at the time he clinched his fifth title was 62 wins from 174 tries, or 36 per cent.

Few discount his chances of a record sixth title in 2003, which would, of course, resolve the statistical argument at a stroke.