Nigel Mansell's streak of successive GP wins ended in dramatic fashion at the Monaco Grand Prix, but the Briton believes it's unlikely Michael Schumacher will suffer the same fate on Sunday.

Nigel Mansell's streak of successive GP wins ended in dramatic fashion at the Monaco Grand Prix, but the Briton believes it's unlikely Michael Schumacher will suffer the same fate on Sunday.


Having won the Australian, Malaysian, Bahrain, San Marino and Spanish grands prix this year, Michael Schumacher is on the verge of consigning Nigel Mansell's twelve-year record of five straight F1 race wins to the history books in Monaco this weekend.


Mansell dominated the start of the 1992 F1 season and won in South Africa, Mexico, Brazil, Spain and San Marino. He looked set to take win number six in Monte Carlo, but during the closing stages of the Monaco Grand Prix, Mansell thought he sensed a problem with one of the wheels on his Williams-Renault and pitted. He emerged from the pits five seconds behind new race leader Ayrton Senna, but soon caught up with the Brazilian's McLaren.


For four laps Mansell tried everything he could to pass Senna, but his heroics came to nought and he lost to his arch-rival. To make matters worse, to this day it is widely believed that the wheel "problem" was in Mansell's imagination.


Schumacher aims to break the record he now shares with Mansell in Monaco. However, Mansell believes that Schumacher has much less to contend with than the Briton did in 1992: "You start with the level of competition, and there were a lot of pretty good drivers like Senna, Gerhard Berger, Jean Alesi, Ricardo Patrese, a young chap called Schumacher and myself.


"And there were a lot of cars then, 26, not 20.


"Most importantly, cars were much more unreliable in 1992 than they are today. It was a big part of the driver's job to be constantly listening to the car and making adjustments, because there was no two-way telemetry then, no way the mechanics could make ongoing adjustments while you were out on the circuit.


"Put it this way: if I'd been able to go 43 races without a mechanical failure like Michael, well, I'd like to think I might have been world champion more than once," he added.


The Briton said Schumacher taking the chequered flag - and equalling Senna's record of six wins on the streets of Monte Carlo - on Sunday was a mere formality.


"Unless Schumacher makes a human error he'll walk it. Ferrari have so much in reserve," Mansell said. "We saw in Barcelona that they can operate at nine-tenths of maximum and still be easily good enough.


"What does strike me though is that the rules currently seem to make life even easier for the leading team. Take overtaking. If today's rules had been applied in Monaco in '92, Senna would have been penalised for some of the blocking manoeuvres he did.


"In Barcelona, Schumacher didn't have to overtake anyone on the circuit; he did it in the pits. Again that's not his fault, but it shows there's something badly wrong. A lot of it is down to the circuits, and the changes made to them as a reaction to Senna's death in 1994.


"Many circuits have been sterilised; drivers can go off and not be penalised, or damage their cars on big kerbs. And it's hard to make driving errors because the electronics control everything for you; things like traction control and launch control take driver ability out of the equation. I understand why they've come about," he said. "I have to say they've hurt the sport".


Mansell said he would not grieve if his record was broken in Monaco: "Things happen for a reason, and I'm pretty happy with the way they've turned out. If Michael breaks the record, good luck to him because make no mistake, he's a great driver".

Original article from Car