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FIA grants Schumacher car number swap request

Michael Schumacher will indeed drive car No.3 in the 2010 F1 World Championship, after governing body the FIA agreed to his request to lumber the 'unlucky' No.4 upon Mercedes Grand Prix team-mate Nico Rosberg instead
Michael Schumacher's request to swap car numbers with Mercedes Grand Prix team-mate Nico Rosberg ahead of the F1 2010 world championship campaign has been accepted by both the team and governing body the FIA, it has been confirmed.

It emerged earlier this week that the F1 returnee – making what has been described as the greatest comeback in sporting history as he endeavours to add an eighth drivers' title to his extraordinary career CV – had asked to be allowed to carry the No.3 on his car as 'Ross [Brawn – team principal] knows that I prefer to have odd race numbers' [see separate story – click here].

The record-breaking German had initially been allocated No.4 and his compatriot Rosberg No.3, but a quick browse through the sport's historical statistics reveals some interesting facts.

Schumacher has claimed all seven of his F1 Drivers' World Championship crowns to-date with odd-numbered cars – with No.1 in 1995, 2001, 2002, 2003 and 2004, No. 3 in 2000 and No 5 in 1994. Intriguingly, the No.4 car has never won the title in F1 history, and has indeed achieved just seven victories over the last decade – courtesy of David Coulthard (two), Ralf Schumacher (two), Rubens Barrichello (one), Robert Kubica (one) and Kimi Raikkonen (one).

Moreover, the 41-year-old has only ever begun a single race at the highest level with an even-numbered car, getting behind the wheel of the No.32 Jordan for his Belgian Grand Prix debut at Spa-Francorchamps back in 1991 – and retiring with clutch failure just moments after the starting lights had gone out.

“Michael has a preference for odd numbers,” a Mercedes Grand prix spokeswoman is quoted as having said by SPEED TV. “He asked if he could be the odd number and we were happy to accept.”

The switch means the 2010 F1 World Championship entry list now reads as follows:

1 Jenson Button Vodafone McLaren-Mercedes McLaren-Mercedes
2 Lewis Hamilton Vodafone McLaren-Mercedes McLaren-Mercedes
3 Michael Schumacher Mercedes GP Petronas Mercedes-Benz
4 Nico Rosberg Mercedes GP Petronas Mercedes-Benz
5 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull Racing Red Bull Racing Renault
6 Mark Webber Red Bull Racing Red Bull Racing Renault
7 Felipe Massa Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro Ferrari
8 Fernando Alonso Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro Ferrari
9 Rubens Barrichello AT&T Williams Williams-Cosworth
10 Nico Hülkenberg AT&T Williams Williams-Cosworth
11 Robert Kubica Renault F1 Team Renault
12 TBA Renault F1 Team Renault
14 Adrian Sutil Force India F1 Team Force India Mercedes
15 Vitantonio Liuzzi Force India F1 Team Force India Mercedes
16 Sébastien Buemi Scuderia Toro Rosso STR-Ferrari
17 TBA Scuderia Toro Rosso STR-Ferrari
18 Jarno Trulli Lotus F1 Racing Lotus Cosworth
19 Heikki Kovalainen Lotus F1 Racing Lotus Cosworth
20 TBA Campos Meta 1 Campos Dallara
21 Bruno Senna Campos Meta 1 Campos Dallara
22 TBA USF1 Team USF1 Cosworth
23 TBA USF1 Team USF1 Cosworth
24 Timo Glock Virgin Racing Virgin Cosworth
25 Lucas Di Grassi Virgin Racing Virgin Cosworth

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HartleyF1 - Unregistered

January 22, 2010 1:47 PM

I posted this on another story last night.... Scumacher may be funny about even numbers... but why whinge to take a number 3 if its only a Superstition, i mean.. let Rosberg keep His number 3 because he was officially with the team first (It's only fair right?)... and if schumachers so Superstitious he can take any odd number and make it his own.. mabe 69 would be a good number.. Problem solved???? Errr NO, NO, NO!!! HE WANTS TO BE SEEN AS NUMBER 1 IN THE TEAM COZ THATS WHAT HE HAS ALWAYS HAD!.... It really is just a case of Schumacher wanting the lowest number on his motor.. I bet he even has the red paint on his car to signal he is the (unofficial) team leader! You all just know im right!

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