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Part 3 of the mini series about the debut of Michael Schumacher. Today we looked at his first kilometres in the car and his impressive qualifying.
When Michael arrived on the track on Friday, expectations were somewhat high but nobody would expect that Schumacher would be so fast. Schumacher's teammate, Andrea De Cesaris wasn't a mediocre driver, he had scored podiums and had already driven 12 seasons in F1. He also had the upperhand on Gachot, quite often beating him by over a second in qualifying. The crowd were excited to see Schumacher but Michael knew that these first laps were the first laps in a racing car around Spa. One thing worth noting is that the beautiful Jordan 191 was a very fast car, De Cesaris had scored points on 4 occasions throughout the season. However during the first few practice laps Schumacher was immediately faster than De Cesaris beating him in both practice sessions, Andrea who returned to the pits was dumbfounded especially when his engineer compared the data, ''Look, Michael is taking Blanchimont flat and you're not. You have to take this corner flat'. Michael who would be known for her fierce mentality, immediately showed it as the new kid on the block, he hit Formula 1 Legend Alain Prost from behind while going into busstop, Alain who probably didn't even know who he was must've looked surprised, Michael didn't think to much of it and when he was asked what happened he said 'Alain just braked way to early' a pretty bold statement from somebody who hasn't driven an F1 race against a 3 time world champion.
After his impressive Friday the publicity grew around Schumacher, rumours circulated the paddock that Michael was the biggest German talent since Stefan Bellof. He beat the disillusioned De Cesaris by a whopping 7 tenths to take 7th behind the Mclarens, Ferrari's, Williams of Mansell and the Benetton of Piquet. De Cesaris qualified 11th with the Italian being flabbergasted by the young Germans pace. 📽:FOM no copyright intended, all rights reserved