Schumacher can't be discounted says Hill

Damon Hill has insisted it would be foolish to write off old rival Michael Schumacher.

At 41, Schumacher has at times looked his age in his comeback year, in particular in comparison to Formula One's fast young guns such as Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel.



Although excuses have been made of late about Mercedes' inability to get their tyres working, amongst other issues, Schumacher was found wanting in the last race in Valencia as he finished a career low 15th.



Approaching the halfway point of the season and Sunday's British Grand Prix, the seven-times champion is a staggering 93 points behind championship leader Hamilton and is still to finish on the podium this year, never mind win a race.



But after enduring many legendary battles with Schumacher on track, 1996 world champion Hill believes the German cannot be ruled out of any equation.



"I thought he was getting the upper hand there for a while," said Hill with regard to his rivalry with team-mate Nico Rosberg.



"His rightful place is at the front, and when that is the case all is well with the world. That is still where he sees himself.



"But you should never write the guy off. I made that mistake. You just can't count him out. He is never out.



"He will somehow pull something out of the hat from somewhere, and he is very determined to achieve things.



"He'll also want to show he can win at the age of 41. He's still a very young guy. These days 41 is not that old."



Hill is adamant Schumacher, who made millions of pounds throughout his previously glittering career, did not come back simply to cash in again.



"It's not about the money," added Hill.



"He loves driving. Where else are you going to get the same sort of fulfilment or kick? He is a racing driver, has always been a racing driver.



"Guys like him have been racing karts or something since they were in short trousers. It's what they love to do."



Hill feels the season will "boil over" at Silverstone after a few races in which it has simmered nicely, in particular with Jenson Button and Hamilton going head to head on home soil.



Just six points separate the McLaren duo at the top of the drivers' standings, and a 120,000 crowd will be hoping - perhaps expecting - a one-two finish.



"Your closest, most significant competitor is your team-mate," added Hill.



"But when you've a team-mate as good as Jenson, it's not a foregone conclusion.



"Lewis has the mindset of a driver, under a normal state of affairs, that sees him being first and the rest second - which is great, one way of looking at it and what you'd expect from a competitor.



"But perhaps Jenson is a little bit more opportunisitic, will be slightly more mature and realistic about things, but will not be letting Lewis get away with anything.



"So between the two British drivers, in possibly the best car, you are going to have a very close, fascinating battle, which is great for everyone."



PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
Luis Suarez looks towards the crowd during the 2-1 victory over England
sport
Life and Style
Cheesecake frozen yoghurt by Constance and Mathilde Lorenzi
food + drinkThink outside the cool box for this summer’s frozen treats
News
John Barrowman kisses his male “bride” at a mock Gretna Green during the Commonwealth Games opening ceremony
peopleBarrowman's opening ceremony message to Commonwealth countries where he would be sent to prison for being gay
Sport
Sir Bradley Wiggins removes his silver medal after the podium ceremony for the men’s 4,000m team pursuit in Glasgow yesterday
Commonwealth games Disappointment for Sir Bradley in team pursuit final as England are forced to settle for silver
Sport
Alistair Brownlee (right) celebrates with his gold medal after winning the men’s triathlon alongside brother Jonny (left), who got silver
England's Jodie Stimpson won the women’s triathlon in the morning
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little
Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

Screwing your way to the top?

Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

Meet the US Army's shooting star

Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform