• European Grand Prix

Podium answers critics - Schumacher

ESPN Staff
June 24, 2012 « Red Bull unsure of Vettel failure | Hamilton refrains from blaming Maldonado »
Michael Schumacher scored his first podium of his comeback in Valencia © Sutton Images
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Michael Schumacher said his podium finish at the European Grand Prix was the best way to answer his critics and thanked Mercedes for keeping its trust in him.

Schumacher drove from 12th on the grid to third in Valencia after a chaotic race in which several drivers ahead of him retired or crashed out. But the seven-time world champion has had his own fair share of bad luck this year, and is hoping for more of the same in the future.

"It's very special and very exciting," he said. "For all my boys - we've been criticised lately - it's just the best answer to give, to get on the podium. I never lost trust in my boys and they did not lose trust in me and that's what team effort is all about. That's what is so important to me, to have this team and this family around me when everybody pulls on one string. The right answer is to do what we have shown today and I hope to have many more moments together with my guys."

He admitted that he did not know he was on for podium until after he crossed the finish line.

"I didn't actually think about a podium at all," he added. "It was when I crossed the line that I asked my guys 'where did we finish?' I saw Webber's pit board and it showed him eighth and seventh so I knew I was one place ahead of that one and then the boys told me it was third and a podium. I couldn't believe that, it's something I didn't really expect. You sort of lose count because I was pretty busy towards the end of the race, plus Hamilton and Maldonado had their issue."