Michael Schumacher, Lewis Hamilton: Who's the G.O.A.T?

Tale of the tape between Hamilton and Schumacher

While most Formula 1 fans have a clear opinion on the matter, the debate continues to rage. Both drivers have achieved incredible success during their respective careers, making it difficult to make a definitive judgement. Ultimately, it's up to each individual to decide who they consider to be the greatest of all time.

Formula One is incomplete without the names of the legendary Michael Schumacher as well as Lewis Hamilton, as these have been arguably the best two to grace the sport in the sport’s history in its entirety. The two legends have been the benchmark as far as all the sports` relations are concerned. Having a total of 14 world championships between them, it can be forgotten that both these legends emanate from different eras, as Michael Schumacher made his first debut in 1990 whilst Lewis Hamilton made his debut in 2007. Upon comparison between the iconic figures, it can also be forgotten that there were different scoring systems in 2021 (Hamilton’s time) than in the 1990s. (Schumacher’s time).

The two legendary icons have surprisingly only raced against each other for just three seasons. When Michael Schumacher left Mercedes, he made way for Lewis Hamilton. In an interview, Michael Schumacher has alluded that Lewis Hamilton is the driver whom he believes will be the one to officially break his record, adding that records are there to be broken. His belief system in Lewis Hamilton has been backed by Hamilton’s ability to match Schumacher’s seven world championships, and Hamilton being able to eclipse all of Schumacher’s records. 

While it was believed that the legendary Michael Schumacher’s seven world titles were unsurpassable, the German Sebastian Vettel was the one who seemed most likely to get close with a string of four crowns in a row. However, it would turn out to be the Mercedes legend, Lewis Hamilton who would rise to the occasion, who’s eyeing his eighth world title in the F1 2023 edition which would be a record-breaking win.

Hamilton vs Schumacher

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It was during the 2020 Formula One season where Lewis Hamilton ticked off several of Michael Schumacher’s long-standing records. Hamilton won his first world title when he was just 23 years in the year 2008, whereas Schumacher has his first win in the year 1992, only to have his first world title in the year 1994. Before the 2020 season, Hamilton has reached 84 grand prix wins, it would turn out to be 103 after the 2020 season, thereby beating Schumacher whose record was 91 grand prix wins.

Two Greatest Formula One drivers ever

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Tale of the Tape

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In accordance with the 1991 system of points, Michael Schumacher had 1.335 points (4.4 per race) whereas using the same 1991 scoring system, Lewis Hamilton would have had 1.417 (5.3 per race). Again, on comparison using the 2021 system points, Michael Schumacher would be having 3.967 (13 per race) whilst Lewis Hamilton has 4.172 (15.6 per race).  The Ferrari legend, Michael Schumacher, has been the F1 Team’s most successful driver, whereas Hamilton has also been Mercedes’s most successful driver. Both the legends had memorable Hungary performances. Hungary 1998 was one of Schumacher’s greatest drives in Formula One, whilst Hamilton’s victory at the 2009 Hungarian Grand Prix was reminiscent of Schumacher’s 1998 performance.

Michael Schumacher was 37 when he retired for the first time in 2006, and after his brief return to the sport, he was 43 when he completed his final race. Hamilton’s contract with Mercedes comes to an end after the 2023 edition. Schumacher was always prepared to go to extremes in his races, and he was once penalized for some of his controversial actions. Schumacher’s blistering pace and consistency make him the most complete Formula One driver of all time. His dedication, determination, consistency, commitment, and ability to perform outstandingly in each and every race that he competed in makes him a rare gem in the history of the sport. Having done all there is to do within the race series, and having ticked all the boxes as far as the achievements list for the sport is concerned, Schumacher remains one of the greatest to ever grace the sport.

Lewis Hamilton on the other hand, the first ever and only black driver in the history of the sport, has been credited with solidifying Formula One’s global following by inspiring a larger audience through social activism, being an advocate for anti-racism and calling for increased diversity within the sport. He has been wailed as the greatest to ever have graced the circuit.

Here is a recap of the most memorable performances of the greatest drivers of all time:

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