Lot 101

Sotheby’s Sealed: Schumacher – The Making of a Legend

2000 Ferrari F1-2000


Hong Kong | Hong Kong, Hong Kong



Chassis No.
Bill of Sale Only
  • Campaigned by Ferrari legend Michael Schumacher in his first Ferrari World Championship-winning season and Ferrari’s 2000 Formula One Drivers’ World Championship
  • Driven to victory by Michael Schumacher at the Brazilian Grand Prix
  • Driven by Michael Schumacher to pole position at the Monaco Grand Prix, the only pole position achieved by Schumacher at Monaco during his Championship years at Ferrari
  • Driven to a pole position and 5th overall at the Spanish Grand Prix
  • This revolutionary chassis was a critical contributor to Ferrari’s first Formula One Drivers’ World Championship in 21 years and the start of Ferrari’s dynasty run of five consecutive Driver’s World Championships from 2000 to 2004
  • This chassis was a key contributor to ending Schumacher’s four-year Championship drought, launching and inalterably transforming Ferrari, Schumacher, and Formula One
  • Ferrari Classiche certified
  • Highly eligible example for Ferrari’s Corse Clienti program from one of the golden eras of Formula One

There is no greater name in the pantheon of motorsport than Ferrari, and few more decorated or celebrated drivers than Michael Schumacher. Together, Schumacher and the Scuderia formed a history-making partnership, winning five back-to-back Formula One World Drivers’ Championships between 2000 and 2004 and topping the Constructors’ table no fewer than six times.

The Prancing Horse’s total domination of the sport from the turn of the millennium was due in no small part to Schumacher’s incredible once-in-a-generation talent, but also the engineering genius of Technical Director Ross Brawn and the now legendary Ferrari F1-2000 grand prix car that he helped create—a machine that reset the bar for engineering and performance for its time.

The ground-breaking racer made its competition debut in 2000, boasting an advanced package of aerodynamics and a redesigned 90-degree V-10 engine that allowed engineers to subtly lower the car’s centre of gravity. A confident Ross Brawn ramped up expectations at the start of the season, telling gathered press: “I think we’ve probably had the best car we have ever had at the beginning of the season since the present group has been working together here at Ferrari.”

A blistering pace and dominant performance by Schumacher in the opening race of the season backed up Brawn’s bravado—and things only got better. In Brazil, two weeks after the triumph in Australia, Schumacher won again. That success was followed by victory at San Marino in the third round of the championship, while at Imola, Ross Brawn’s race management gave Schumacher the edge over rival Mika Häkkinen.

Though the team faced some unfortunate luck during the middle of the season, the F1-2000’s pace did not disappoint; in the following 11 grands prix, Schumacher placed the iconic red machine on pole position no fewer than eight times. Always a man capable of finding another level of performance at the crucial moment, the German ace closed the season with four back-to-back wins, clinching the Formula One World Drivers’ Championship in the penultimate race of the season at Suzuka. That remarkable win represented the first time a driver from the Scuderia had topped the Drivers’ Championship table since Jody Scheckter some 21 years earlier—a historic feat that served as the springboard for one of the most celebrated periods in Ferrari history.

Chassis 198, the car offered here, proved vital to the success of Schumacher’s Championship-winning 2000 season. Serving initially as the Scuderia’s spare car, it played a pivotal role from just the second round of the championship after Schumacher ran wide during qualifying at Interlagos for the Brazilian Grand Prix. Having badly damaged the undercarriage of his first car, chassis 198 was called up during qualifying and subsequently started the race third on the grid. Not only did the F1-2000’s pace shine during Schumacher’s battle with Häkkinen, but so too did its reliability; Häkkinen was forced to retire following a blown engine, while his McLaren teammate, David Coulthard, was disqualified for excessive wear of his car’s front wing end plates. Schumacher romped to a famous victory, carried by chassis 198.

“We made an obvious improvement to our starting strategy, I was able to catch Mika but I didn’t want to take a risk too soon and of course he was not keen to let me pass,” said a jubilant Schumacher. “I enjoyed our battle—it’s been a long time since there was a good fight and overtaking for the lead.”

Chassis 198 was called up again as the Formula One road show arrived at the Circuit de Catalunya for the Spanish Grand Prix on 7 May. Demonstrating performance parity with his usual charge, chassis 198 delivered Schumacher a stunning pole position—the first time he had achieved that feat in what would become his Championship-winning season. After setting fastest lap in qualifying, chassis 198 continued its pace on race day, leading the field until his first pit stop on the 24th lap. Schumacher regained the lead just two laps later and retained it for a further 22, but a refuelling error coupled with a slow puncture eventually diminished the German’s chances; however, he crossed the finish line in 5th place, adding additional Championship points to his tally.

The car’s next competitive outing would come at Monaco, on the hallowed asphalt of Monte-Carlo. Perfectly suited to the technical, tight street circuit, the F1-2000 again proved lightning-quick in the hands of Schumacher and scored pole position. Historically, this was an important moment for chassis 198, as this was the last time Schumacher achieved a pole position at Monaco in a Ferrari. Following two abortive starts to the race proper, the lights went out a third time and Schumacher stormed into the lead ahead of the Jordan of Jarno Trulli. Such was his pace, the Ferrari ace had amassed a buffer of some 35 seconds by the time he pulled into the pits on lap 49, allowing him to retain the lead when he re-joined the race. With victory tantalisingly close, disaster struck just six laps later; the car was forced to retire with a broken pushrod.

Chassis 198’s final race with Schumacher took place about five weeks later at the A1-Ring in Austria. Schumacher qualified chassis 198 in 4th position with teammate Barrichello just ahead of him in 3rd. Unfortunately, luck was not on the Scuderia’s side at Austria as right at the start of the race Ricardo Zonta, in his BAR-Honda, hit Schumacher from behind, forcing both to retire from the race. Thankfully, Schumacher was not hurt and the damage to the car was light, however, it was enough to end its racing for the day. The car was subsequently repaired by Ferrari and brought to all of the remaining Grand Prix races of the 2000 season but was not used again in Grand Prix competition.

Once chassis 198’s Scuderia Ferrari career had drawn to a close, the car was returned to Maranello, where it was completely rebuilt. In March of 2001, the car was displayed at the Geneva Motor Show on Ferrari’s stand and subsequently sold to an enthusiast in the U.K., making it amongst the very first Ferrari Formula 1 cars of the modern era to be privately owned. With this owner, the car was driven frequently on tracks around Europe including Monaco, Misano, Silverstone, and Brands Hatch. Its appearance and demonstration at these events, including at the Finali Mondiali in 2002, was pivotal in helping Ferrari to set up the F1 Clienti program. The car’s next private owner was Ferrari collector Kevin Crowder of Texas, he had the car Ferrari Classiche certified in 2005 and prepared for further use in F1 Clienti events. The consignor purchased chassis 198 in 2016, and has also driven it in several Ferrari Corse Clienti events, including the Ferrari F1 Clienti events held in Monza in 2017 and at Austin, Texas, in 2020. Today, it offers its next owner the vanishingly rare opportunity to experience the unique thrill of a race-winning V-10 grand prix car from one of the golden periods of Formula One. But more than that, this car stands as a tangible link to one of the greatest drivers of the modern era—a piece of history instrumental in the revival of Scuderia Ferrari’s fortunes and a touchstone of Schumacher’s incredible five-season winning streak.