Michael Schumacher, the greatest legend of sports is struggling for his life. He has met a fatal accident. It happened two days ago. But it could have happened at any challenging moment in his life. He is known to be undaunted in face of dangers few want to face, few dread and few ever relish. He has, in past, defied death and alarming situations till destiny finally got its icy grip upon him. He is the most daring German racing driver of all times – a seven time Formula One World Champion. He had broken every record and could justly be called “the greatest driver the sport has ever seen”.
Before joining ‘ Mercedes’ Schumacher won German drivers’ World SportCar Championship in Formula Three. He joined ‘Benetton Formula Team’ in 1991 and won the championship again. Then he moved to ‘Ferrari’ in 1996 and won another five consecutive drivers’ titles with them from 2000 to 2004. He won French Grand Prix in 2001; Brazilian Grand Prix in 2002: Canadian Grand Prix in 2003 and Japanese Grand Prix in 2004.He had retired from ‘Formula One’ driving in 2006 but kept the Ferrari relationship as an advisor. In 2010 he joined ‘Mercedes’ again.He met collisions on track with Damon Hill in Adelaide in 1994 with and with Jacques Villeneuve in Jerez in 1997. UNESCO had appointed him as its ambassador and a spokesman for driver safety. A known philanthropist, Schumacher has donated millions of dollars in charity works.
His first adventure into the world of driving was with a ‘pedal cart’ that was fitted with a small motor cycle engine by his father when he was 4. He crashed into the lamp post but his parents were undaunted. They got him into ‘Karting Club’ as its youngest member at Kerpen-Horrem.Sacrifices are made by parents to mold our careers and we often forget that. Rolf Schumacher, his father, built another cart for him with the discarded parts and the kid won the first club championship with it. To meet the aspirations of his son, his father took a second job of ‘cart repair mechanic’. His mother worked at the track’s canteen to meet both the ends.
As the age of 14 was required to get a license in Germany, Michael obtained the license in Luxembourg when he was twelve. He finally got the German driving license in 1983. He was a master driver on wet tracks, known to have made very few mistakes as his ability to produce fast lap in crucial moments which won him most of the races. According to Race Experts – “A measure of a driver’s capabilities is his performance in wet races, because the most delicate car control and sensitivity are needed.Schumacher knew his machine, his tracks and tyres.” He was nicknamed as Regenkonig, Rain Baron and Rain King. Schumacher’s other nicknames include Schumi, Schuey and Schu. Before the rise of Schumacher ‘Formula One’ was considered as a fringe sport in Germany and it was Schumacher who made this sport so popular there. In 2006, when he retired, three of the top ten drivers were German.
One of the best compliments made by the famous commentator Stirling Moss for Michael goes like – “It was not a race. It was a demonstration of brilliance.” He has left the track but the spirit of adventure in him refused to rest; shifted to other sports. Skiing was his favorite pastime. On 29 December 2013, while skiing with his son on ‘Dent de Burgin’ in ‘French Alps’ he fell and hit his head on a rock. He went into coma. A severe head injury has frayed his life. Though he was attended by two ski patrollers but they couldn’t help him. He was airlifted within fifteen minutes to a hospital in Moutiers and then to Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Grenoble. The time ahead seems to be tough for the most daring sportsman of the history today. A brilliant chapter is demanding prayers. May God give him health and long life. Amen