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Modern F1 drivers 'wimps' - Weber

ESPN Staff
August 7, 2014 « Schumacher medical files suspect found hanged | Sutil: Lack of testing 'a bit weird' »
Willi Webber talks to Michael Schumacher at Hockenheim in 2010 © Sutton Images

Michael Schumacher's former manager Willi Weber says today's drivers lack the appeal of the stars of previous generations because fans can hear them air their grievances during the race over the radio.

In the aftermath of Fernando Alonso and Sebastian Vettel's fantastic duel at Silverstone pundits and viewers said the spectacle had been spoiled somewhat by both men frequently complaining about the other's driving to their race engineers. Weber, who is credited with discovering Schumacher and managed both Michael and Ralf on entry to Formula One, believes this is one aspect of the sport today which spoils the aura of the men behind the wheel.

"Who wants to see the wimps of today crying on the radio?" Weber told Sport Bild. "There are no more characters like Ayrton Senna, Jacques Villeneuve and Michael Schumacher were. They would not complain on the radio but give their answer on the track."

But Weber, who most recently managed Nico Hulkenberg until 2011, does not think the drivers are completely to blame for the falling viewing figures.

"There are many reasons for the decline of the Formula One. First, the fish rots at the head. Bernie Ecclestone is much too old to embrace the age of new media while FIA president Jean Todt lacks the power to enforce. These men think only of their own interests."

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