This is F1's most influential person, according to fans
London - Seven times world champion Michael Schumacher has been named the most influential person in Formula One history after a vote by fans on the sport's official website
The result was revealed on Wednesday, the 70th anniversary of the first world championship grand prix, which took place at Silverstone in 1950.
Ferrari great Schumacher, who has not been seen in public since he suffered serious head injuries in a ski accident in 2013, beat former commercial supremo Bernie Ecclestone with 61 percent of the vote in a head-to-head final.
The German holds the record for titles and race wins (91), although six times champion Lewis Hamilton is currently threatening to take both.
In earlier rounds of the tournament, Schumacher beat the late champions Niki Lauda, Ayrton Senna and Juan Manuel Fangio as well as team founder Enzo Ferrari.
An expert panel had produced a 32-name shortlist, divided into four categories of drivers, team bosses, technical innovators and game changers.
Michael Schumacher celebrates after winning the Chinese Grand Prix. Picture: Reuters.
Formula One said thousands of fans had participated in the online poll, but did not give further details.
Master of his own destiny
F1 journalist Mark Hughes explained that Schumacher’s standing is due to more than just his achievements and records.
“He was willing and able to use his stature as a driving wonder to direct his own destiny,” Hughes said.
“He quite specifically made himself more than just an employee and it was this which led him to not only accept Ferrari’s offer to join after his double titles at Benetton, but to do so on his terms, bringing with him the architects of his Benetton success, Ross Brawn and Rory Byrne.”
to sign up for the IOL Motoring Newsletter and receive all the latest motoring news and launch reports, industry insights, car reviews and motorsport gossip in your inbox every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.