Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The king is back - and this time for real :)

Not so long ago, there were talks that the king was coming back to race. Not so long ago, I was ecstatic about this fact and wrote this 'The king is back'. Not so long ago, I tried to hunt out ways of finding time to ensure 2 hours of bliss every alternate Sunday in the midst of a packed year. Not so long ago, I haggled with a friend on campus to ensure we got unabated access to Star Sports. Not so long ago, my hopes of seeing the king back on track were shattered. Yet not very long ago, came news that the king is indeed back. And this time, it is for real. So says his official site. And yet again, I am very happy about this turn of events.

I simply admire that person. Not just for the sportsman he is or for the magic he weaves on the track, but for the story he is. Many argue that he is ruthless and would do anything to win. I disagree. I think he is one sportsman who puts his 110% to achieve that success. Be it gruelling training sessions, or strategizing with the team. C'mon, he joined Ferrari when they were nothing more than a moneybag, and he was a reigning champion. He was hugely instrumental in turning them around. So for those critics who argued that Ferrari was twirled around Schumi's little finger, I say - deservedly so. Talent and results speak louder than words and these can drown any body's counter arguments.

Austria 2002, was perhaps an aberration, but then again, it was for the good of the team. At least Schumi and Ferrari did not blatantly defy the laws like Mr Hamilton! Never! And the adherence to talent, performance, hard work all iced with ethics, according to me, makes his list of followers long and never ending. It is very hard to come by a superstar who is not adulterated by his success. Schumi's humility in success and graciousness in defeat are legendary. He for one really never allowed success to get into his head. And that is where the piece of doing a task for the love of the task rather than for the love of the result comes in. I remember Tendulkar saying once that he played for the fun in the sport, not for the money and that money was just a temporal gain. I loved the ideology. And now again, take the case of Schumi. F1 is a risky sport. It requires tremendous levels of fitness, agility and mental acuity, not to mention the stamina to put up with the g-forces that throw one around in the cockpit. And Schumi is all of 41, with no one to prove a point to, with no one to answer to, with the marginal utility of money almost being 0! And so, when I wonder about why he wants to do it all again, I realize the sheer love and passion he has towards the sport and what he was doing as a member of the F1 family. I truly wish I could do something in my life that I would enjoy doing so much that no other lifestyle would appeal to me.

So, now I look forward to 2010 with renewed gusto. I can hardly wait for Baharain to begin. People who know me, would know the degree of respect I have for Herr Schumacher. Back in 2005, when he won the championship, I celebrated with pizza with a few close people, who had been on the receiving end of my fan following - the red dressing on Mondays post a Schumi victory or the irritation and better-stay-away-from-me-or-feel-sorry demeanor post a Schumi loss. And today after knowing that the king is soon coming back, I had to celebrate with a few friends, only this time, it was a post midnight caffeine session at our wonderful cafe here on campus. It is after all the emotion that counts right? So, best wishes to the king. Looking forward to the injection of life, ethics and thrill back into F1. I am sure Schumi's return would bring back eyeballs to the TV set. It sure as hell has brought back mine. Not to mention the return of Sporty Sundays on this blog starting next year :) Amen....


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