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Schumacher’s 2002 Austria team-orders Ferrari up for auction

The car that took one of the most controversial victories in Formula One will go up for auction at this year’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

The 2002 Austrian Grand Prix was burned into the memories of F1 fans after Ferrari ordered Rubens Barrichello to hand victory to Michael Schumacher just before the finish line. The victory was Schumacher’s fifth in a dominant championship season but resulted in outrage among fans who felt Barrichello, who had been dogged by reliability issues and only finished one of the five races prior to Austria, had been cheated.

Team orders were banned later that season after Schumacher cruised to a dominant fifth world title.

The Ferrari F2002 used by Schumacher in Austria that year — chassis No.219 — also scored victories at Imola and Magny Cours and is now set to go under the hammer on November 30. It will be among a number of cars up for auction at this year’s season finale in Abu Dhabi, including a 1990 Ferrari F40 signed by current Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel.

Proceeds from the sale of the F2002 will be donated to Michael Schumacher’s Keep Fighting, Never Give Up Foundation — a charity established by Schumacher’s family after he suffered severe head injuries in a skiing accident in 2013.

The RM Sotheby’s auction will take place in Formula One’s Paddock Club hospitality and the cars will be paraded down the start-finish straight and in the pit lane ahead of the auction.

“The Michael Schumacher F2002, chassis No.219, is truly special; it represents one of the last Rory Byrne-designed, V10 era cars and was like a guided missile in acquiring wins on route to a championship won with sheer racing dominance,” Oliver Camelin, Car Specialist at RM Sotheby’s, said. “As a result, it remains as one of the most dominant Formula 1 racing cars in history and is fittingly joined by the ultimate in Ferrari supercars in the virtually as-new Ferrari F40.”

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