As fate would have it, Michael Schumacher, after decades at the wheel at hundreds of kilometers per hour, suffered an accident on December 29, 2013 while skiing, which left him in critical condition, with irreversible consequences. By the family’s wish, details about his real health status barely transcend, but now his wife, Corinna Schumacher, has broken the silence that characterizes her and has spoken about the incident and how it has marked a before and after in her life. in the documentary Schumacher, which just premiered on Netflix. “I miss Michael every day. And I’m not the only one who misses it. The children, the family, his father, everyone around him. We all miss Michael, even though he’s still here, ”she confesses excitedly. “He is no longer the same, but he is here, and that gives us strength to continue,” he adds. “I have never blamed God for what happened. He just had very bad luck, all the bad luck that could have been, ”reflects Corinna, who accompanied the athlete practically throughout his career, also managing his finances, and from whom he has not separated since the accident.
Corinna Betsch – her maiden name – intervenes on several occasions throughout the documentary, initially recalling her crush on the pilot, whom she defines as “very funny” and as a “wonderful” person, while images of the link are shown between the two, held in August 1995. “I feel very fortunate to have met Michael. He is the most charming person I have ever met, ”he confesses, while recalling some anecdotes from the beginning, such as when he organized a birthday dinner for him and he was the only one who helped him clean and wash the dishes. “I thought, ‘This is a real man.”
Schumacher was nicknamed the kaiser and he established himself as one of the best Formula 1 drivers of all time, but he also had to deal throughout his career with the media exposure of a seven-time world champion – the only one to have reached that figure with Lewis Hamilton -, who was proclaimed the winner of a grand prize more than 300 times. A popularity that, according to his wife, he resisted, assuring that he did not want to “be a star” or “go so far.” “He didn’t like being surrounded by the press and people at all. The only thing that interested him was running ”. “It is true that at times it could seem somewhat unsympathetic, but it was because a lot was demanded of him,” adds his friend Jean Todt, current president of the International Automobile Federation. “He was an extremely reserved and shy person.”
The one hour and 52 minute documentary begins with footage of the German and his wife diving underwater, followed by him at the wheel of the Ferrari during a Formula 1 grand prix in Monaco. “You and the car are one. You have to know exactly what the car limit is. Because there always is, and you have to be careful. As with everything in life, you have to try not to overshoot or fall short ”, he himself reflects in a loud voice. off, before giving way to the images of his debut in the category, on August 24, 1991, at the Belgian circuit of Spa. Then, the Brazilian Ayrton Senna was the king of the circuits and Schumacher a promise of 22 years who the rest of the pilots saw “too young”, according to Flavio Briatore, and who came to the competition by a stroke of luck, after Eddie Jordan retiring in the middle of the season. Five years later, in 1996, he won his first world championship.
Despite the fact that the fatality wanted the accident that almost ended his life to occur outside the circuits, while competing Schumacher kept in mind that the experience did not prevent him from failing, mainly since he lived closely with the death of Senna after a serious crash the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix, in which the German was proclaimed champion. The fateful episode is recalled by Schumacher himself in archival statements. “The worst were the next two weeks. The process of assimilating that he had passed away ”. A journalist then asked him if it had been easy for him to drive again, to which he replied that, suddenly, he began to see things “with different eyes”. “I drove around Silverstone in a normal car and thought, ‘I could die here,” he says.
In addition to Corinna, other members of the Schumacher family also take part in the documentary, such as the pilot’s father, Rolf, and his children, Gina and Mick, who recall the admiration their father aroused on the circuits. “I have great respect for my father. I’ve always had it. It has a lot of presence. When he walks into a room, everyone shuts up. That’s how I remember it, ”says Mick, who decided to follow in his father’s footsteps on the circuits. “Every time I look at it, I say to myself, ‘This is how I want to be.”
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.