They were team mates at Ferrari during the team’s domination of Formula One at the turn of the millennium. But life after F1 is proving to be tough for Michael Schumacher and Rubens Barrichello.
Schumacher, embarking on his second F1 retirement, was slated to participate in a kart race against some of the fastest young racers last week.
The 44-year-old took to the La Conca circuit in Italy on Thursday and Friday last week to practice. But he pulled out of the event before the competition began.
Victory in the weekend’s two finals went to Max Verstappen, the 15-year-old son of Jos Verstappen, who was Schumacher’s team mate during the year he won his first drivers’ championship.
Meanwhile another of Schumacher’s former team mates, Rubens Barrichello, was making a new start in Brazilian Stock Car Racing. Barrichello switched to IndyCar last year after leaving F1 and made steady progress, taking a fourth and a fifth in his last two finishes.
But after struggling to get a financial package together to continue racing in the series, Barrichello has swapped single-seaters for tin-tops and gone stock car racing in his home country.
Racing at his home venue of Interlagos, where luck often seemed to desert him in F1, Barrichello crossed the line in 25th place following a puncture. He participated in a handful of races in the category, finished 22nd twice.
Barrichello will return to action in two weeks’ time but it remains to be seen what plans Schumacher has for racing after leaving F1. Mercedes team principal Ross Brawn has said Schumacher’s role with the company would be limited to the road car division following his F1 retirement.
This Saturday, the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles will debut a new exhibit honoring one of the most successful teams in American motorsports.
Titled “Chip Ganassi Racing: Fast Tracks to Success | 30th Anniversary Tribute,” the exhibit will display several significant cars, trophies, and other artifacts from CGR’s storied racing history. Ganassi will formally be honored April 15, 2020 at the Petersen’s Annual Racers Night before the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach.
Vehicles displayed in the exhibit will include the 1983 Patrick Wildcat MK9B raced by Chip Ganassi to his best finish in the Indianapolis 500, the Lexus-powered Riley MK X1 raced by Scott Dixon in the 2006 24 Hours of Daytona, the Dallara IR-05 driven to victory by Dario Franchitti in the 2010 Indianapolis 500, the Ford GT that finished first in the LM GTE category at the 2016 24 Hours of Le Mans, and the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 driven by Kurt Busch in the 2019 NASCAR Cup Series.
“Chip Ganassi is an influential member of the automotive community, and his team’s penchant for success is a reflection of his raw skill and passion for the sport,” said Petersen Automotive Museum Executive Director Terry L. Karges. “Complemented by a visually dynamic and compelling 180-degree video, ‘Chip Ganassi Racing’will celebrate the team’s victories and tell its story while taking visitors on a trip down memory lane.”
“Chip Ganassi Racing: Fast Tracks to Success | 30th Anniversary Tribute” will run through January 31, 2021. The museum will host a ticketed opening reception on December 13. More information on the Petersen Museum can be found at www.petersen.org.