The 1994 Michael Schumacher-Damon Hill Collision: Was It a Mistake?

Updated on January 13, 2020
Oivas Namok profile image

F1 Enthusiast | Michael Schumacher Fan | Grown to Respect Ayrton Senna | Discovering Past Masters in F1 | Amazed by F1 Cars!

Schumacher: The New Hero

The untimely demise of Ayrton Senna opened up the Formula 1 world to new heroes. Consider the scenario, the champs from a couple of years back were all gone. Alain Prost had retired, Nigel Mansell had left F1 and Senna left the sport with a huge empty spot. There was a big vacuum waiting to be filled, and though Nigel Mansell returned in 1994, he was only a shade of his former self. Damon Hill in the other Williams car was usually faster than Nigel.

So, Damon was the title contender followed closely by Michael Schumacher, who had already earned a reputation for himself as the one who gave Senna a tough fight. In fact, it was Michael who was the de facto title contender while Damon was the other partner of Senna who had a chance; boy did Damon prove that wrong!

To Schumacher’s credit, despite the FIA ruling against the Bennetons’ car parts and disqualifying him, in addition to a couple of race bans, he was still a title contender in the last race. That speaks about the lead he must have opened up in the earlier races because both of Schumi’s banned races were won by Damon Hill.

However, by the time the last race arrived, the results took a drastic turn. So did people’s perspective.

Schumacher–Damon Hill: 1994 Australian GP


Coming to the last race, the Australian Grand Prix, Schumacher led Hill by just one point. Though at second place on the grid at the start of the race, he pulled away and was followed closely by Damon Hill. The two racers were way faster than the rest and they opened up a gap to the third-place cars and beyond. However, between Michael and Damon, the gap remained between a second to three seconds.

Then at the 35th lap, Schumacher hit the curb, lost momentary control, and tried hard to avoid the wall, but there was contact. Schumacher then veered the car to the track, by which time Damon Hill was right behind. Damon did not see the crash, so for him, it was an opportunity to overtake the slow Benneton of Schumacher. And then Schumacher veered. Well, the rest is history. There was a collision.

Here’s the video.

Now, there have been numerous discussions on this video. Many claim that Schumacher was indeed guilty of ramming into Damon. However, what was not known was if Schumacher’s car was indeed damaged and incapable of joining the race before crashing into Damon. If the car was capable of continuing the race, then Schumi was justified in defending his line.

For whatever it was worth, the FIA found nothing untoward about the incident and Schumacher won his first F1 title.

Memories of the incident refused to die. Many continue to believe that Schumacher was at fault, and the British fans were the last to accept Damon’s loss in 1994. As history would show us, Michael’s tryst with British compatriots or competitors was not so exciting. Whether it was Johnny Herbert, Damon Hill, David Coulthard, Martin Brundle, or even Lewis Hamilton, there was no denying that there was a love-hate relationship between them. But none can refuse giving respect to Schumacher.

Schumacher–Damon Hill: 1995 Season

Still fresh from the 1994 title loss, Damon Hill was all fired up for the 1995 season. Williams was an uber-competitive car, and only the Benneton of Schumacher was anywhere close to their performance. This was also the year when Hill took out Schumacher twice and got away with it.

The first incident that we will look at is the Silverstone GP, which also happened to be Damon’s home GP. Here’s the video.

Schumacher–Hill: 1995 Silverstone GP

Did You Know?

Schumacher had 7 drivers championship, three 2nd place (excluding 1997) and three 3rd place finishes in the drivers standing from 1991 to 2006?

That is an astounding 13 close attempts at the championship out of 16 years. If we consider 1997 as a 2nd place too, then Michael was vying for the top spot every year barring his debut year and 1993.

That's got to be a world record too!

Now, readers would have heard the commentators’ views about the incident, and it did appear too optimistic on Damon’s part, almost bordering on foolhardy. There was a video of the post-race talk with both drivers independently, and Damon appeared a bit guilty of the incident. Take a look.

See the difference in the body language of the two drivers. Funny enough, Michael just put the 1994 Adelaide incident on Damon as well.

But that was not the only incident of 1995. Here is another one.

Schumacher–Hill: 1995 Monza

The video is in a different language, so I urge viewers to take a look at the incident. What was seen clearly was that Michael and Hill collide while overtaking a backmarker. What was not known, on a lighter note, was how did the backmarker survive?

Schumacher–Damon Hill: Almost a Third Incident at Nurburgring, 1995

This was almost the third one. The video is in a different language, so I encourage viewers to watch more than hear. I couldn’t help but notice the narrator’s wo-wo-wo-wo-wo-wo-… That was really close. The later part of the 90s had the rule of allowing one block by the driver in front, and if that applied to 1995 as well, then Schumacher was within his rights. He was, after all, taking the outside line to the turn.

To most of the F1 fans’ relief, this did not turn out to be the third incident. Schumacher went on to win the 1995 season and won the second world title in succession. Damon had to wait for one more year before he could take the championship.

Back to the Garage

While the 1994 incident is well worth a discussion (without conclusion), and even if Schumi was wrong, wouldn't the 1995 events make it even? I think even the drivers would have called it even and moved on. It is just the fans who feel that it is not over yet.

Now it is more than two decades since the incidents, but it still remains fresh. We will still have to guess who was right or wrong, but one thing is for sure, those were the wild years in F1!

© 2019 S K


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)