Hamilton chases F1 record again as Schumacher's son debuts

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Drivers arrive in the winners circle after the Russian Formula One Grand Prix, at the Sochi Autodrom circuit, in Sochi, Russia, Sunday, Sept. 27, 2020. Drivers from left, Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton of Britain, third place, Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas of Finland, first place, and Red Bull driver Max Verstappen of the Netherlands, second place. (Kirill Kudryavtsev, Pool via AP)

NÜRBURG – NÜLewis Hamilton's bid to match the Formula One win record held by Michael Schumacher is back on, and he could achieve it in Schumacher's home country of Germany.

Hamilton was chasing a record-equaling 91st win two weeks ago in Russia before his race was ruined by penalties for breaching an obscure rule on where drivers can practice their starts before the race. His Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas took the win.

That sets the stage for Hamilton to try again in Germany. He'll have to do it in conditions which would have tested even Schumacher, who was nicknamed “Regenmeister” or Rain Master for his talent on wet tracks. Rain is likely on all three days and temperatures on race day may not reach 10 degrees (50 F).

Formula One is back at the Nürburgring, one of the most storied circuits in the series, for the first time since 2013. Officially, the German Grand Prix is on hiatus this year, and this race — a late replacement on the coronavirus-affected calendar — is called the Eifel Grand Prix after a nearby mountain range.

As many as 20,000 fans could attend, making it the best attended race of the season apart from the Russian Grand Prix.

NEW GENERATION

It's been eight years since Michael Schumacher's last F1 race, and now his son will officially be part of an F1 race weekend for the first time.

Mick Schumacher, 21, will take over Antonio Giovinazzi's Alfa Romeo for the first practice on Friday. That brings him another step closer to a full F1 drive, possibly even next season. He already has experience of the paddock from racing in Formula Two, where he leads the championship, and doing demonstration runs in his father's old F1 cars before races.