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Schumacher has tables reversed this time

india Updated: Oct 12, 2006 17:45 IST

The Formula One championship battle between Michael Schumacher and Fernando Alonso comes down to a driver needing one point to clinch the title in the season finale.

But this time, Schumacher is the one at a disadvantage in what he says is the final race of his career.

The pair head to the Brazilian Grand Prix on October 22 with Alonso holding a 10-point advantage over Schumacher. Alonso needs one point to clinch the title, the same situation Schumacher enjoyed three years ago heading into the last race of the season.

"As we all thought, the championship will be decided in Brazil," said Alonso, who clinched the title in Sao Paulo last season when it was three races from the end of the schedule.

In the last race of 2003 at the Japanese Grand Prix, Kimi Raikkonen was the one trying to catch Schumacher. The German knew the only way he'd fail to win his fourth straight title for Ferrari would be if Raikkonen won the race and Schumacher went scoreless.

Schumacher came very close to losing it. Rain interfered with the practice session and Schumacher qualified in the seventh row. He finished eighth in the race and Raikkonen came in second to Rubens Barrichello, who was Schumacher's teammate at the time.

But that was good enough for Schumacher.

"It's a strange feeling for me," Schumacher said then. "Most championships end with a victory and to win with the last of the points gives me mixed emotions.