At the end of an exciting European Grand Prix in Valencia, Michael Schumacher finished in third place today, taking the 155th podium finish of his career, with team-mate Nico Rosberg finishing in sixth place.
Starting from 12th, Michael fought through the field to claim his first podium since the 2006 Chinese Grand Prix. Nico finished sixth, after converting a one-stop to two-stop strategy, and charging from P13 to P6 in the last 10 laps. Both drivers made two pit stops with Michael stopping on laps 19 and 41, and Nico on laps 20 and 46. Nico has scored 75 points in six races since his win and first points in China, the second highest total after Fernando Alonso (76).
“Wow, I did not even think of getting on the podium for any second in the race today, so what a wonderful result! Finally it happened! After such a long time waiting and for jumping on the podium so unexpectedly, I feel extra happy. I think that was the best answer to give to everybody who started doubting our work: get the car together and fight back; never give up, as anything can happen. A big thank you to the team and to everybody who kept on believing we would get on the podium again. That’s what team work is about. A special word for my mechanics and engineers who have done a fantastic job this weekend after some difficult races this year. I didn’t think a podium was possible – not even at the end of the race, because it was pretty busy in the last laps and I had lost count of where I was. Then when I crossed the line, I asked the guys where I was and they said “Third – on the podium!” It’s one of those moments that you enjoy deeply as a driver. We were close a couple of times but it was great for it to happen in a spectacular race like this, through strategy and lots of passing on a circuit where overtaking is difficult.”
“That was a really exciting race. I had a bad first few laps and lost positions, then the Safety Car came out at a bad moment for me. After the restart, I thought I would end up finishing out of the points, because I had the oldest tyres and therefore no grip, which made it very hard to defend. We had planned to try a one-stop strategy but had to convert to two stops, and thanks to the strategy guys, we were on fresh tyres when everybody else was struggling. I was in P12 on lap 47 and P6 at the end, so it clearly worked and we are very happy with a good team result after such a chaotic race, with two cars in the top six. A great result for Michael with his podium and I am happy to score some more nice points.”
“Congratulations to Michael and the team on a fantastic and well-deserved podium finish. Michael demonstrated today that if we can give him the opportunities, he will get a great result. And well done to Nico as well. He was in quite a difficult position at one stage but came back and gave the team a really strong points score today. The early part of the race was quite difficult for us, and our early strategy did not come together as the tyres behaved differently to our pre-race predictions. So we had to react, and we did so extremely well, leaving our stops as late as possible to give our guys fresh rubber at the end. It was such an exciting end to the race, and I am very proud of both of our drivers, everyone here in Valencia, and back at our factories in Brackley and Brixworth today.”
“A marvellous race from Michael with the right speed and the right strategy. Coming from 12th on the grid to third on the podium is a good achievement, which Michael truly deserves and he achieved that with a great drive. Nico started sixth and lost five places during the first lap, which was a big handicap – so to climb back to sixth place was a good recovery. Since his win in China, Nico has scored one point less than Fernando Alonso, who brought home the most points in the last six races. As for the rumour spread by another team that Michael used his DRS flap where he should not have done, I can confirm that this was not the case, as our data proved and the stewards of the meeting confirmed. I am really pleased for Michael and the team. We always believed in each other and today was the first of hopefully more podiums to follow.”
Source: Mercedes AMG