Lewis Hamilton can equal Michael Schumacher’s record of 91 grand prix victories this weekend – but former Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone has told AFP he believes the German had it tougher in his day.
A win in the Eifel Grand Prix at Germany’s Nurburgring on Sunday would also take six-time world champion Hamilton a step closer to equalling the record of seven world titles held by Michael Schumacher.
Lewis Hamilton replaced Michael Schumacher at Mercedes for the 2013 season. In December that year, the German suffered a severe brain injury while skiing and has been out of the public eye ever since.
Bernie Ecclestone, who oversaw the transformation of F1 into a global multi-billion-dollar commercial giant, said Schumacher, who made his F1 debut in 1991, raced in a different era.
“Schuey was driving on his own more or less when he was racing in his car,” Ecclestone said by phone from his home in Switzerland.
“Hamilton has got God knows who helping him, telling him what his tyre pressure is, speeds through corners.”
“In the old days Alain Prost, who I have great admiration for, when the flag went to start the race he was on his own and it ain’t like that any more.”
Ecclestone, who turns 90 later this month, said he was not trying to undermine Hamilton’s achievements during a spell of extraordinary dominance for the British driver.
“You cannot say anything bad about Lewis, you cannot say he is not good, that is not the point,” he said.
“How good he is compared to somebody else, well he is super, super talented and would be amongst the top five drivers for the last 30 years.
“Was he better than Michael? Would Michael have been better in that car (Mercedes)? You can’t say.”
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