Friday 20 September 2019

Michael Schumacher travels to Paris for 'secret treatment' as F1 great continues recovery

Michael Schumacher Photo: AFP
Michael Schumacher Photo: AFP Newsdesk Newsdesk

Former Formula One world champion Michael Schumacher was admitted to a Paris hospital for "secret treatment" earlier on Monday, Le Parisien newspaper reported.

Schumacher turned 50 on Jan. 3 but has not been seen in public since a skiing accident in the French Alps five years ago that left him with severe head injuries and in a medically-induced coma for several months.

Schumacher was taken to the Pompidou hospital in southwest Paris on Monday afternoon, Le Parisien said, without citing its sources.

The French newspaper said the former champion would undergo treatment based on stem-cell transfusion by French surgeon Philippe Menasche.

A spokeswoman for Schumacher did not immediately return a request for comment.

Schumacher remains motor racing's most successful driver, with a record 91 grand prix wins. He won his first two titles with Benetton in 1994 and 1995 before five in a row with Ferrari between 2000-2004.

In January his family released a statement saying he was in "the very best of hands".

Schumacher's son Mick is pursuing a racing career too, recently enjoying success in F2.

The 20-year-old admitted it was special to claim his maiden Formula Two victory at the Hungarian Grand Prix - a race his father won on four occasions.

He was cheered to the chequered flag by his mother, Corinna, sister and grandmother, in an impressive lights-to-flag win. Michael Schumacher's long-serving manager Sabine Kehm, who is guiding Mick's career, joined the celebrations on the pit wall.

Fifteen years after Michael last won at the Hungaroring during a career which yielded a record seven championships and 91 victories, the German national anthem was played to honour another Schumacher triumph.

"It is very special," said Mick, moments after his maiden triumph in Formula One's feeder series.

"Even thinking back to last year when I won my first Formula Three race at Spa, a track which my dad also liked.

"We found a little bird which apparently brings luck and it seems as though it has. I am very happy my family are here and I have their support. I will celebrate with them tonight."

Schumacher started from pole in the reverse-grid race, and led all 28 laps before crossing the line 1.4 seconds clear of Japan's Nobuharu Matsushita following a tense finale.

The youngster is a member of the Ferrari driver academy and tested for the Italian team earlier this year. His best F2 result before Sunday's triumph was fourth, and he is 11th in the championship.

"Whether I get into Formula One next year, in two years, or three years, I don't know," he added. "Only time will tell.

"The first win is the hardest but once you get that victory, it gives you a lot of confidence. I will do my best and try to learn as much as possible to be ready for the next step."


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