2000 title success was "decisive" for Schumacher and Ferrari

10-01-2019 11:00
by Bobby Vincent
2000 title success was decisive for Schumacher and Ferrari

When Michael Schumacher won the 2000 Formula 1 world championship; it was a "decisive" moment for the German's career, according to his manager Sabine Kehm.

Schumacher won the first two of his seven world titles with Benetton, before switching to Ferrari for the 1996 campaign. However, the German driver endured a few frustrating years prior to his first success with Scuderia.

He was disqualified from the world championship in 1997, and then suffered a broken leg which forced him to miss most of the 1999 season.

2000 was the year for Schumacher, as himself and Ferrari claimed nine victories on the way to clinching his first of five successive titles with the Italian side in a period of unparalelled dominance.

"It was clear the pressure was extremely high, I felt that it was a decisive year," Kehm told F1's official podcast, Beyond The Grid.

"I don't know what would've happened if the championship would not have happened. I really had the feeling that I wouldn't know what would have happened if they don't make it. He was really incredibly working in that year and really put in everything."

Kehm is a former F1 journalist and also worked as Schumacher's press officer during his dominance in the early 2000s, and she shared an insight about the emoitions when he sealed the title in the 2000 Japanese Grand Prix.

"I really remember when Michael won (the title) in Suzuka - I never imagined such an explosion of emotions from the whole team," Kehm revealed. "When he crossed the finish-line; people in the back of the garage were in tears. I think only then I really understood what it meant to them, because they had tried for so long for so many years.

"There were some mechanics who had been around for 25 years and they were literally really crying in tears, but ashamed they were crying so they were crying to hide it. I've never seen something so touching. That was the moment that I really thought 'wow'. It was even bigger than I expected it to be."

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