Past/Present: German Champions' first German wins

We compare Sebastian Vettel and Michael Schumacher’s first victories at home.

Sebastian Vettel and Michael Schumacher German Grand Prix
Sebastian Vettel and Michael Schumacher© DPPI

Their careers have gone down very similar paths but now Sebastian Vettel has emulated his hero, Michael Schumacher, further by winning at home. We compare their first German Grand Prix victories.

Michael Schumacher 1995 German Grand Prix
Schumacher wins the 1995 German Grand Prix© DPPI

THEN: Hockenheim 1995

After Michael Schumacher delivered Germany their first Formula One championship in 1994, the German fans were hoping for Schumacher to become the first German to win a race on home soil. They got their wish in 1995.

Starting from second on the grid, Schumacher inherited the lead when pole sitter Damon Hill spun into the first corner of the second lap. This left Schumacher under pressure from Hill’s Williams team mate David Coulthard, who was running a different strategy to the German.

Schumacher’s Benetton team opted for a two-stop strategy which would eventually prevail over Coulthard’s single stop, with Schumacher emerging ahead of the Williams after his second stop.

He’d go on to win the race just under six seconds ahead of Coulthard, to the delight of his home fans.

Sebastian Vettel Red Bull 2013 Nurburgring
Vettel wins the 2013 German Grand Prix© Lars Baron/Getty Images

NOW: Nurburgring 2013

Vettel had come close on a number of occasions but it would take him his sixth attempt to win the German Grand Prix, despite winning almost every other race on the calendar

Like Schumacher’s first victory in Germany, Vettel started from second position and won a race heavily influenced on pit stop strategy.

Vettel got the jump on pole-sitter Lewis Hamilton at the start but after a safety car period, he found himself under huge pressure from the Lotuses of Romain Grosjean and Kimi Raikkonen.

Red Bull decided to cover Grosjean’s stop on lap 40 while Raikkonen stayed out, eventually stopping for soft tyres on lap 49. This left the Finn behind on better tyres but despite getting close, he couldn’t deny Vettel his first German Grand Prix victory.