Schumacher wins European Grand Prix

Podium, European GP 2006

Podium, European GP 2006 

 © The Cahier Archive

Michael Schumacher won the European Grand Prix at the Nurburgring this afternoon in his Ferrari, 3.7 seconds ahead of Fernando Alonso in his Renault and Felipe Massa in the second Ferrari in third place - his first career podium.

The win is Schumacher's second consecutive on the 2006 season, and a record extending 86th career win.

Fourth place went to Kimi Raikkonen in his McLaren-Mercedes followed by Rubens Barrichello in the Honda in fifth, Giancarlo Fisichella in the second Renault in sixth, Nico Rosberg (who started last) in seventh and Jacques Villeneuve in the Sauber-BMW in the final points paying position in eighth.

At the start Alonso beat Schumacher to the first corner, while on the first lap Liuzzi made contact with Heidfeld and spun while trying to limp back to the pits - bringing out the Safety Car.

The race restarted on lap 3, with Alonso from Schumacher, Massa, Button, Raikkonen, Trulli, Barrichello and Villeneuve in eighth.

On lap four Raikkonen passed Button for 4th, and Montoya passed Fisichella for 10th.

On lap 13, Mark Webber retired from 12th place with a hydraulic failure.

On lap 17, Alonso and Massa made their first stops, with Schumacher in on lap 18 coming out behind Alonso. Barrichello pitted on lap 20, Button, Villeneuve and Klien on lap 21, Heidfeld on lap 22, Raikkonen from the lead on lap 23, Trulli on lap 25, Fisichella on lap 26, Montoya on lap 27, Ralf Schumacher on lap 28, and the last of the first stops by Rosberg having climbed up to fifth on lap 33.

On lap 28 Button and Klien retired, followed by Montagny with an engine failure on lap 30.

At half distance the order was Alonso leading Schumacher by one second, followed by Massa, Raikkonen, Rosberg, Barrichello, Ralf Schumacher, Villeneuve, Fisichella and Montoya in tenth.

On lap 38 Alonso made his second stop, followed by Massa on lap 40, and then Schumacher from the lead on lap 41 coming out in front of Alonso with a 5 second lead.

Trulli pitted on lap 43, followed by Raikkonen on lap 44 from the lead, rejoining in fourth. Also pitting on lap 44 was, Barrichello, Ralf Schumacher, Villeneuve and Fisichella, the Italian getting by the Canadian in the pits.

At lap 45 Schumacher led Alonso by 7.7 seconds, followed by Massa, Raikkonen, Montoya, Rosberg, Barrichello, Ralf Schumacher, Fisichella and Heidfeld in tenth.

On lap 47 Sato retired to the garages, while Montoya and Rosberg pitted making the last stops on lap 48.

On lap 53 Ralf Schumacher retired with an engine failure from sixth, and Montoya retired from ninth.