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F1 - 1991 Benetton B191

Michael Schumachers first F1 car

Specific history of this car:
The Schumacher switch caused an absolute furore in the F1 paddock but it was a move that began Schumacher’s journey to greatness and the re-writing of the history books.
The Benetton B191-05 was the start to the stratospheric journey of one of the world’s most successful sportsmen of all time and it was at Monza on 8th September driving Benetton B191 chassis number 05 that Michael Schumacher took his first world championship points, finishing in fifth place the rest is in those history books.
Respected, and regarded as a thoroughly nice chap by those who know him well, Michael Schumacher is the most accomplished racing driver that has ever lived. He has re-written the record books, becoming, and the winner of the most Grand Prix’s ever,and amassing the most points in a season.
The beginning of the 2006 campaign saw Michael equaling Ayrton Senna’s pole position record of 65. Of course Michael is also the winner of an unprecedented 7 World Driver’s Championships, the first of which, in 1994, was won in a Benetton B194, a direct derivative of the B191, in which Michael scored his first World Championship points.
Benetton B191 05 was retired from Formula 1 at the end of the 1991 season. Benetton removed the works Ford HB engine and re-painted 05 in Mild Seven colours. The car was then used by the team as a show car until 1995, after which it was stored at the factory until purchased by a british car dealer.
Under their ownership chassis 05 has been fully restored and race prepared by a leading Formula 1 specialist, in the U.K. 05 has now been returned to the exact specification as it appeared in 1991.
A correct Ford HB to Ford’s works (Benetton) specification has been re-united with the car, which comes complete with PI dash, data acquisition system and all equipment to run and drive the car, including a spare set of wheels and some spares. Comprehensive documentation of the history, restoration and race preparation of 05 is also included.
Having last appeared at Lord March’s prestigious Goodwood Festival of speed event in 2003, in 2006 B191-05 reappeared to celebrate 100 years of Formula 1, when former Grand-Prix driver Le Mans winner and broadcasting star, Martin Brundle was re-united with the car that he first tested at Estoril during the 1991 season.
Brundle drove for Brabham in 1991 but was snapped up by Benetton boss, Flavio Briatore, to partner Michael Schumacher for the 1992 season, after triple World Champion, Nelson Piquet was dropped by mutual consent. Brundle signed a three year deal with the team, “He’s a good driver,” Briatore said of his new signing, “The best on the market at the moment.” He described Brundle as being a big boost to the team. “He is very nice and he will be very good for the atmosphere of the team,” said Briatore. “He is English and this is an English team. Martin is very professional and experienced.”
Martin Brundle drove superbly during the 1992 season, doing everything that could be expected of him. The team used Benetton B191’s in ‘b’ spec. For the first 3 races of the season, before the introduction of the B192. Brundle’s consistency was incredible, only being out of the points once, from Imola through to the end of the season. The manner in which he fended off Ayrton Senna for much of the British Grand-Prix at Silverstone proved his ability to withstand intense pressure over a long distance; and the Englishman was denied a certain victory at the Canadian Grand-Prix after a differential bolt failed.
Brundle was unfazed by his teammate Michael Schumacher, who was already being hailed as the greatest driver of his generation. In fact Brundle raced as well as, and often more effectively than his esteemed teammate. To this day Brundle is regarded as the fastest teammate that Schumacher has ever had.
Martin Brundle was first re-united with Benetton B191 05 at Donington Park in 2002 for ITV’s Grand-Prix programme. It has been some years since Martin appeared at the Goodwood Festival of Speed but he is looking forward to returning this year, driving a car that he describes as an old friend. “We were often surprisingly close to the Williams” Martin says, “even though they had active suspension, a V10 and a semi-auto shift.”
“It was always such an easy car to drive. It would step out a little bit at the back, but it would go no further. Once you got used to that, and accepted it, it was really stable. I think it was something to do with the aero characteristics of the car. It seemed to have slightly more grip in yaw than head-on. So when you were a little bit out of shape, it was actually more planted.”
Martin still loves the looks of the B191, especially from the back. Low and wide with fat rear slicks, like an F1 car should. The last time Martin was in the cockpit of chassis 05, he grinned, “fits like an old pair of trainers.” He said.
In 2007 the car has been prepared be race ready. In its first outing at Jim Clark Revival meeting in 2008 at Hockenheim, the car proved to be competitive with an out of the box podium finish at the Euroboss race.
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