Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 17 April 2014

Biting Back: More goody two Schus

Telegraph Sport: where the debate starts

SUZUKA, JAPAN - OCTOBER 04: Michael Schumacher of Germany and Mercedes GP announces his retirement at the end of the season during previews for the Japanese Formula One Grand Prix at the Suzuka Circuit on October 4, 2012 in Suzuka, Japan. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)

Michael Schumacher kindly provided the inspiration for one of my favourite headlines when he and sibling Ralf became the first brothers to finish 1st and 2nd in the same race, in Montreal in 2001. Goody Two Schus was the cheesy line I came up with.

Now Schu senior has been making headlines again with his announced second retirement from Formula 1 after this weekend's Japanese Grand Prix.

Avowed petrolheads would say he made a mistake coming back in that he was never going to live up to the legend of seven motor racing world titles.

But Schuey has rewritten the sport's history book in more ways than one with his not so successful second coming.

He may have returned as less of a driver but he bows out this time as a much better person, a proper Goody Two Shoes, in fact.

The dark and dangerous side of Schumacher, prepared to run rivals off the road in search of an advantage, tended to deflect from his achievements first time around. Now we have a more humble and human Schumacher admitting: “In the past six years I have learned that losing can be both more difficult and more instructive than winning. Sometimes I lost sight of this in the earlier years.”

It can't have been easy for the epitome of German precision. But in re-inventing himself as a less driven man, he has allowed us to bid an undisputed farewell this time to one of the greatest there has ever been.

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