Formula one is likely to suffer a temporary reduction in interest from within Germany when the championship resumes without Michael Schumacher next March.
That is the claim of former racer Hans-Joachim Stuck, who raced 74 times in the 70s.
The German told a column for Eurosport: “It is obvious that, at the beginning, many of Michael’s fans will not bother getting up at 4 o’clock in the morning to watch the Melbourne race.”
Stuck, however, thinks things will return to normal when the circus comes back to Europe after the first few ‘flyaway’ grands prix.
He referred to F1’s ‘many German protagonists’, including Mercedes-Benz, BMW and the Cologne based Toyota team, as well as the remaining five German race and test drivers.
Stuck said of the prospects for 2007: “Old drivers are leaving, new drivers are coming in. We have a control tyre, a new format for practice — to me, everything is open and exciting.”