Left field

The Reuters global sports blog

Odd Germans and lucky underpants


MOTOR RACING/SCHUMACHERCynics may observe that Michael Schumacher’s desire to be the odd man out in Formula One has the added bonus of always putting the German ahead of his team mate in the pecking order, even if only on paper.

What Schumacher wants, Schumacher generally gets and it comes as no shock that the new Mercedes (formerly Brawn GP) team run by his old Ferrari technical director Ross Brawn immediately granted the seven times world champion’s wish andĀ give him the number three on his car, ahead of Nico Rosberg’s number four.

Some may be more surprised that the most successful driver Formula One has ever seen, a man able to separate his private and personal life into compartments and rationally analyse everything around him, should be seemingly so superstitious.

But maybe they shouldn’t be.

Formula One, a sport that has seen 31 races marred by fatalities since the world championship started in 1950 and many more drivers killed in other arenas, has its rituals like any other competitive activity.