Vital F1 - Schumacher cheated his way to 1994 title?
Vital Login
Social Login

Other Sites

Network Navigation

Vital Partners

'If It's F1, It's Vital'

Schumacher cheated his way to 1994 title?

Did Michael Schumacher cheat his way to his first Formula One World Championship with Benetton?

That's the claim that has been made by then team-mate Jos Verstappen.

The 1994 Formula One World Championship will always be looked upon as a tragic season for the sport.

The deaths of Roland Ratzenberger and Ayrton Senna at Imola will never be forgotten, while the Drivers championship was decided under controversial circumstances when Schumacher deliberately collided with title rival Damon Hill after the German had already made a mistake around the Adelaide track.

That collision forced the retirement of both drivers and Schumacher claimed his first of seven Formula One World Championships.

However according to then team-mate Jos Verstappen, Schumacher was only in the position to win the World title following the use of a number of illegal aids.

The Dutch driver who went on to win the Le Mans 24 Hour race in the LMP2 class strongly believes that he did not race the same car as Schumacher.

Schumacher won nine of the fourteen races that he took part in that season, with the Australian season finale, being his only retirement. [however he was later disqualified from the Belgian Grand Prix victory and he was also banned from two races after his disqualification after the British Grand Prix.]

Schumacher's team-mates Jos Verstappen retired from six of the ten races he started [with two third place finishes], JJ Lehto retired from three of his six races [sixth was his best finish] while Johnny Herbert ended the season with two retirements.

Verstappen believes that Schumacher not only had an illegal advantage over the other cars, but also his team-mates.

'People think I'm looking for an excuse, I just know that his car was different to my car. I kept thinking: this can't be done! I braked at the limit and went as hard as possible into the corners. Schumacher was able to do things and not to me. There was something wrong.' he told NuSport as quoted by Sky Sports.

'There were electronic aids. They will never admit it, but I am convinced, I later asked Flavio Briatore, who had brought me to Benetton and was then the team manager. He said, 'Let's not talk about it.' So I know enough now.'

'Michael depends on the car just like everybody else. To some people he is God. That bit is disappearing. He is not superman - he never was.

'When we went karting he never beat me. I know the reason why he beat me at Benetton.'


During the first three races of the Formula One season, Ayrton Senna [who had moved to Williams that season] grew suspicious that the Benetton car was illegal.

Schumacher was enjoying fast starts away from the grid and had also gained an advantage over Senna during the first Grand Prix of the season in Brazil when the Benetton pit-crew were able to fuel Schumacher's car faster than the Williams team could fuel Senna's car.

Benetton were later in the season found guilty of cheating by the FIA after an investigation into a pit-stop fire at the German Grand Prix that involved Verstappen.

The FIA deemed Benetton's fuel valve illegal as it was without a fuel filter, which enabled them to pump fuel into the car 12.5% faster than the legal fuel valve that was used by other teams.

However as the equipment was supplied by Intertechnique, Benetton received no punishment.

After Senna's retirement on the first lap of the second race of the season at the Pacific Grand Prix in Japan, Senna stood and watched the race from beside the track attempting to hear any suspicious noises that suggested traction control was being used illegally, Senna returned to the Williams pit suspicious that the Benetton car was indeed illegal.

Benetton, along with Ferrari and McLaren were later investigated by the FIA on suspicion of breaking the FIA-imposed ban on electronic aids.

Ferrari supplied the required information immediately and no further action was taken, while Benetton and McLaren initially refused to help with the investigation and were fined $100,000 for their initial refusal to cooperate.

When the FIA investigation concluded, both teams were found to have hidden functionality in their software, the McLaren software aided the gearbox program [that allowed automatic shifts] and was deemed legal, however the Benetton software included the ability to improve traction, which was illegal as drivers gained a benefit from such things as fast starts, but with no evidence that it had been used in a race, Benetton avoided further penalties and fines.








Join Vital F1

It's easy to join up and join in on VitalF1.com, simply click the link and enjoy getting involved!

If you are already a member of Vital Football, your logins will automatically work on VitalF1.com!

The Journalist

Writer: Red5 Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday December 13 2011

Time: 12:00PM

Your Comments

yes it was a cheat, if Hill did that to Schumacher at that time, he'd have had the points taken off him.
The Fear
Very interesting comments from Verstappen.
red5
Flav would do whatever it takes. So yes his car probably had extras. As for the shunt with Hill it was blatent cheating.
johnkelv
Hill didn't need to commit himself to trying to complete the pass there and then, he should have had the awareness to realise that at the very least he would be able to battle Schumacher for the position later in the lap. Schumacher wasn't the first and will not be the last to try and take out another driver to secure the title. But having watched the Senna Movie recently Verstappen's comments do not come as a great surprise.
DJ
 

Have Your Say

Log in...
with your social network     OR     with your Vital account

Recent Vital F1 Articles

2016 Russia GP - FP1 (Friday April 29 2016)

Hamilton has one eye on retirement (Friday April 29 2016)

Horner praise for Renault (Thursday April 28 2016)

Booth returns to Formula One (Thursday April 28 2016)

Alonso believes he's still the best (Wednesday April 27 2016)

Hamilton can re-use China engine (Wednesday April 27 2016)

Blog: Sochi Preview (Tuesday April 26 2016)

Who will win in Russia? (Monday April 25 2016)

Red Bull's wings no longer clipped? (Thursday April 21 2016)

Hamilton is the benchmark says Rosberg (Wednesday April 20 2016)

Grosjean slams 'idiotic' Ericsson (Wednesday April 20 2016)

Ricciardo is all smiles (Tuesday April 19 2016)

Four take maximum points in China (Monday April 18 2016)

Embarrassed Vettel slams Kvyat (Monday April 18 2016)

Blog: Chinese GP Report (Sunday April 17 2016)

2016 China GP - Race (Sunday April 17 2016)

Blog: Shanghai Qualifying (Saturday April 16 2016)

2016 China GP - Qualifying (Saturday April 16 2016)

2016 China GP - FP3 (Saturday April 16 2016)

2016 China GP - FP2 (Friday April 15 2016)

2016 China GP - FP1 (Friday April 15 2016)

Kick in the goonies for Hamilton (Thursday April 14 2016)

Good things can happen for Renault (Wednesday April 13 2016)

Has Hamilton lost his spark? (Wednesday April 13 2016)

Blog: Shanghai Preview (Wednesday April 13 2016)

Tyre chaos in China? (Tuesday April 12 2016)

Who will win in China? (Monday April 11 2016)

Haas targeting points from every race (Wednesday April 6 2016)

Defending champ scores zero points (Tuesday April 5 2016)

Rosberg equals Sir Stirling Moss (Monday April 4 2016)

Blog: Bahrain GP Report (Monday April 4 2016)

2016 Bahrain GP - Race (Sunday April 3 2016)

Blog: Sakhir Qualifying (Saturday April 2 2016)

2016 Bahrain GP - Qualifying (Saturday April 2 2016)

2016 Bahrain GP - FP3 (Saturday April 2 2016)

2016 Bahrain GP - FP2 (Friday April 1 2016)

2016 Bahrain GP - FP1 (Friday April 1 2016)

Alonso not cleared to race in Bahrain (Thursday March 31 2016)

Blog: Sakhir Preview (Thursday March 31 2016)

CVC contemplating selling stake in F1 (Wednesday March 30 2016)

Who will win in Bahrain? (Tuesday March 29 2016)

F1 to drop behind paywall in 2019 (Monday March 28 2016)

Force India rues red flag (Friday March 25 2016)

Ferrari play down strategy error (Thursday March 24 2016)

Haas enjoy amazing debut (Wednesday March 23 2016)

Hamilton pleased with damage limitation (Wednesday March 23 2016)

F1 drops new qualifying format (Tuesday March 22 2016)

Blog: Australian GP Report (Sunday March 20 2016)

2016 Australia GP - Race (Sunday March 20 2016)

Blog: Melbourne Qualifying (Saturday March 19 2016)

2016 Australia GP - Qualifying (Saturday March 19 2016)

2016 Australia GP - FP3 (Saturday March 19 2016)

2016 Australia GP - FP2 (Friday March 18 2016)

2016 Australia GP - FP1 (Friday March 18 2016)

Australian Grand Prix could be messy (Thursday March 17 2016)

Aston Martin enter F1 with Red Bull (Thursday March 17 2016)

Lauda lambasts new rules (Thursday March 17 2016)

Channel 4 left red faced (Wednesday March 16 2016)

Di Resta set for busy 2016 (Wednesday March 16 2016)

Blog: Melbourne Preview (Tuesday March 15 2016)

Who will win in Australia? (Tuesday March 15 2016)

Bernie killed the radio star (Wednesday March 9 2016)

Cash flow problems for Sauber (Wednesday March 9 2016)

Archived Vital F1 Articles

List All Vital F1 Articles
Have your say
Click here to suggest an article
Click here to suggest a poll

Vital Members League (view all)

1. Red5 1087
2. DJ 1032
3. The Fear 773
4. Villaininthemerde 612
5. johnkelv 583
6. Druss_the_Legend 555
7. Push The Button 472
8. col8 334
9. The Intimidator 180
10. __villa__ 145

Current Site Poll (view all polls)

Who will win in Russia?
Hamilton 37%
Rosberg 21%
Vettel 15%
Raikkonen 6%
Ricciardo 15%
Kvyat 0%
Someone else 6%