• Schumacher comeback

Irvine slams Schumacher comeback as a 'disaster'

ESPNF1 Staff
October 4, 2010 « Heidfeld confident he will stay in F1 next year | »
When they were together ... Michael Schumacher and Eddie Irvine after the 1997 Monaco Grand Prix © Sutton Images

Hardly a day goes by without someone offering an opinion on Michael Schumacher's comeback, and the latest is former Ferrari team-mate Eddie Irvine.

Irvine, who openly acknowledges he lacked the talent to beat Schumacher during their time together in the late 90s, thinks it is now the German's turn to admit it is he who is struggling for raw pace.

"On paper, his return wasn't a bad idea," Irvine told La Gazzetta dello Sport. "But he had already lost something in 2006, when Felipe Massa was often in front of him. Three years later he has lost even more.

"The result … it's a disaster," he said, adding Schumacher should stop making "excuses" for struggling to keep up with Nico Rosberg in the sister Mercedes. "It's 'this is a new team, with new people'. But in his first year at Ferrari, the car was rubbish but he won three races," said Irvine, who in the sister car finished the 1996 world championship in tenth place.

Irvine also brushed aside suggestions that Schumacher is good at building a team, for example by leading the path on development matters. "Ferrari took him for his talent; he had no idea about how the car was behaving. Michael is a great driver; you can give him a suitcase with four wheels and he'll drive it quickly. Schumacher's strength is the driving, that's all."