The key points are 1.1 second off Schumachers lap record at Fiorano and 4.5 seconds off in 44 laps at Mugello. Pretty impressive for someone without a lot of experiance in an F1 car. If Rossi signs with Ferrari Micheal might need to start looking over his shoulder more often. Niether one of them has much competittion in their respective fields right now, it would be interesting to shake up the mix a little.
It makes you wonder if Schumacher could do even half as well on a motogp bike.
You have to remember that Rossi was a karting champion before he switched to bikes. Many F1 racers came from karts as well. So I wouldn't say Rossi is an entire "newb" to this...But there is little question that Rossi is the best driver in ANY motorspsort..
You have to admire someone that looks for another challenge. Everyone said he couldn't win with Yamaha after he left Honda. This seems to be the next logical step for him. I admire his guts to take on a new challenge. I intially thought it would be like Michael Jordan going to baseball for a few years. But as someone has said on this board he was a karting champ..
"Neither one of them has much competittion in their respective fields right now..."?? You must not have noticed that Michael finished behind Raikkonen and Alonso and had fewer than half the points. Rossi won the championship handily but twice he finished behind Hayden and Melandri.
The best thing about Rossi going to F1 would be to see someone send up the stuffed shirts there. They seem to take themselves sooo seriously.
The greatest? Ridiculous. He is extremely good but if you knew anything about the history of motorcycle racing you would not say that. There have been many exceptional riders. To mention only a few: Geoff Duke, John Surtees, Mike Hailwood, Giacomo Agostini, Barry Sheene, etc. Thats without even going into the more recent greats. Rossi is amongst this elite group but to call him (or one any of them) the greatest is wrong.
"Greatest" is hard to define - most championships, fastest laps, brilliance of career, fastest in the wet, etc. etc.
I think that there's a certain level at which judgments such as "best" end up being purely subjective. I personally think that Senna was the most brilliant, the fastest at any given moment, and there's evidence to support that position. But there's just as much evidence supporting Fangio, Schumacher, Prost and a host of others.
But what about the guys who drove the brutish CanAm cars? It's hard to argue with the results posted by Mark Donohue, a brilliant driver and engineer, in a strange, almost completely unlimited series that was faster than F1 at the time, possibly by a lot. And the endurance drivers merit mention as well (Derek Bell, for example).
I personally don't believe that anyone could coax a car into outperforming itself like Senna (witness his performance at one of the Monaco races where be blew everyone out of the water, including a brilliant Prost drive, with a qualification differential so extreme that it boggles the imagination, or his results early in his career in inferior cars).
So I don't think that "best" can be so blithely assigned. "Among the best" is a safer proposition.
Why would Schumacher have to start looking over his shoulder? He was pretty distant third this year. Rather he should start looking forward (with binoculars). Here is how the championship points went 2005:
1. Alonso 133
2. Raikkonen 112
3. Schumacher 62
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