Fernando Alonso and Max Verstappen both compared to F1 icon Michael Schumacher

Sam Cooper
Michael Schumacher, Max Verstappen and Fernando Alonso.

Michael Schumacher, Max Verstappen and Fernando Alonso.

Both Fernando Alonso and Max Verstappen have been compared to the Formula 1 icon Michael Schumacher.

While Alonso and Verstappen are without doubt two of the finest drivers to ever race in F1, their stats still fall someway short of Schumacher’s currently.

Combined, the duo have 69 wins between them which is 22 less than Schumacher achieved during his 19-season career.

But away from raw numbers, both Verstappen and Alonso’s driving styles have been compared to the German’s who remains the joint most successful driver in F1 history in terms of titles won alongside Lewis Hamilton.

Jean Todt was a man who spent many years by the side of Schumacher and says Verstappen is a “fighter” just like the former Ferrari driver was.

“He’s quick, and he makes few mistakes,” the former Ferrari team principal told Corriere della Sera when asked about Verstappen. “He is a fighter like Michael. But on a human level I know Max too little to judge him.

“Michael, when he ran, could seem a bit cocky and obnoxious, but it was an attitude that served to hide the shyness of him.

“He was humble, he always questioned himself. He never accused the team, not even when the brakes failed at Silverstone because of us.”

With Alonso, the comparison came from a man who very nearly raced against both of them, Damon Hill. The 1996 World Champion hung up his gloves just two years before Alonso would make his debut.

But he did spend plenty of time racing against Schumacher and said the one trait that they both have is the ability to spot a gap.

“He’s invested in this, he understands it, and he knows, like Michael Schumacher as well,” he told the F1 Nation podcast.

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“Michael Schumacher understood where the openings were, where the opportunities were, and he took advantage of those, and it’s the same with Fernando.”

Hill jokingly said Alonso’s defensive skills were so good that he would get him to defend him in a murder trial.

“I’d get him to defend me on a murder charge!” Hill stated.

“It’s boring driving the car, he needs something else to do. He’s going around going, ‘Can I do the strategy as well? Give me more information.’

“He already understands the rules. You’d expect someone who’s been in Formula 1 as long as he has and had all the experiences to have learned something, but you can’t automatically assume that.

“He’s got to become a team boss eventually, because he’d be brilliant. He just understands this game.”