Alonso VS the Schumachers: F1 careers head-to-head

Alex Gassman

by Alex Gassman

Alonso vs Schumachers

Fernando Alonso has had the longest Formula 1 career of any driver ever. At 23 years and counting he has raced against all three Schumachers that have competed in the sport.

To see how Alonso has stacked up against them, here’s a look at his career against Mick, Ralf and Michael Schumacher’s.

Alonso's career

Alonso’s first Formula 1 race was the 2001 Australian Grand Prix for Minardi. He competed in every season up untul 2019 when he instead pursued other motorsport in IndyCar, WEC and even the Dakar Rally.

But in 2021 he returned to Formula 1 with Alpine then moved to Aston Martin in 2023 where he’s announced he’ll be staying until the end of 2026. He holds the record for the most number of F1 race starts ever, with 381 in total.

In that time he’s competed against all three Schumachers – Mick, Ralf and Michael – and has beaten them all on various occasions.

Alonso vs Mick Schumacher

Let’s start with the most recent Schumacher to compete against Alonso, Mick. Mick is Michael’s son and had a tough start to his F1 career with a number of costly crashes when raing for HAAS.

He’s not currently competing in the sport but is a reserve driver for the Mercedes AMG F1 team.

The only two seasons where both drivers competed against each other are 2021 and 2022. Here’s the stats (tables courtesy of Formula1points.com):

The two graphs above show that in the two years where the Alonso and Mick Schumacher competed together, Alonso finished ahead 34 times and Mick was ahead 9 times.

Of those 43 races that both drivers started, only 32 saw both of them finish. And of those 32 races where both were classified, Alonso finished ahead 29 times and Mick was ahead 3 times.

Alonso vs Ralf Schumacher

Ralf Schumacher was the younger brother of Michael, but the two of them competed in the sport at the same time. Ralf’s career was unsuprisingly overshadowed by Michael’s, but he had some success in his own right.

Ralf and Fernando competed together across 6 seasons; 2001, and then 2003 all the way until the end of 2007.

Here’s their head-to-head finishing positions across each of those seasons.

2001 was Alonso’s first year competing in F1 when he was racing for the back-of-the-pack Minardi team. In contrast it was Ralf’s fifth year, and his most successful ever, finishing 4th in the championship and taking three wins for BMW Williams.

From 2003 onwards the balance of power started to swing as Alonso began to come good, leading up to his two championship-winning seasons in 2005 and 2006.

Both drivers competed in and finished a total of 57 races together. Of those, Alonso finished ahead of Ralf in 45 races (79%).

Alonso vs Ralf Schumacher

The table above shows the direct comparison between the two drivers during the 6 seasons in which they both competed.

All the green is on Alonso’s side of the table. His 1204 points, 19 wins, 49 podiums and 2 championship titles more than trump Ralf’s equivalent scores.

Ralf did manage to bag 5 wins and 12 podiums during those seasons, but Alonso’s 11.69 points per Grand Prix is probably the most impressive metric and the best indicator of his success.

Alonso vs Michael Schumacher

Alonso might have wiped the floor with Mick and Ralf, but when it comes to the 7-time world champion Michael Schumacher then we know that, by number of championship wins alone, Alonso plays second fiddle.

The drivers have competed in 8 seasons together: 2001, 2003 – 2006 and 2010 to 2012.

By the time Alonso entered the sport in 2001, Michael had already won 3 World Championships. From 2000 until 2004 he won 5 titles in a row, so Alonso joined F1 during Michael’s most dominant era.

But Fernando was the only driver who could stop that dominance. His titles with Renault in 2005 and 2006 meant Michael finished 3rd and 2nd in those two seasons respectively, and that was enough for Schumacher to annouce his retirement at the end of 2006.

He came out of retiment in 2010 when he raced for Mercedes for three seasons. His best result in those three final years of his career was one podium finish.

 

Alonso vs Michael Schumacher stats

The table above doesn’t show the one-sided story that most of us would imagine when comparing Michael Schumacher and Alonso.

Ok, so Michael won more titls and more races. But Alonso was more consistent, averaging 11.99 points per Grand Prix compared to Michael’s 10.98. That gave Fernando a higher total overall points tally across the 8 seasons. 

But perhaps the most interesting, impressive and telling statistic of all is this:

The two drivers competed in a total of 144 races together. Of those, both were classified finishers in just 96 of them. And of those 96 races, Alonso finished ahead of Michael in 62 of them (65%) whereas Schumacher finished ahead in just 34 races (35%).

Alonso is truely one of the greatest ever.

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Alex Gassman

I‘m Alex. I write F1 and motorsport guides based on my own experience as a racing driver and full-time motorsport nerd. I’ve traveled the world watching F1 and other racing series.

I started oversteer48 with the aim of helping other motorsport fans who want to learn more about racing.

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Join the oversteer48 F1 Insider's club

I’ll send you a weekly email with insider info on the latest F1 news and results. 
Read by over 5,000 busy F1 fans each week.