Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 1 February 2015

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)
SUZUKA, JAPAN - OCTOBER 04: Michael Schumacher (R) of Germany and Mercedes GP embraces Mercedes Motorsport President Norbert Haug after announcing his retirement 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)
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)
Mercedes driver Michael Schumacher of Germany rides a scooter through the F1 paddock at the Suzuka Circuit venue for the Japanese Formula One Grand Prix in Suzuka, Japan, Thursday, Oct. 4, 2012. (AP Photo/Shizuo Kambayashi)
File photo dated 11/07/2004 of Michael Schumacher celebrating winning the British Grand Prix at Silverstone in 2004
Michael Schumacher
Michael Schumacher (left) of the Nazionali Piloti team challenges Ralf Weber of VIP Allstars during a football Charity match at the Am Boellenfalltor arena on July 16, 2008 in Darmstadt, Germany
Michael Schumacher of Germany and Team Holzhauer Racing rides his bike during the International German Championship IDM training session at Sachsenring racetrack on June 12, 2009 in Hohenstein-Ernstthal, Germany
Manager Willy Weber (left) and Formula One legend Michael Schumacher pose for a photo ahead to the WBA Middleweight World Championship fight between Felix Sturm of Germany and Khoren Gevor of Armenia at Nuerburgring on July 11, 2009 in Nuerburg, Germany
Formula One legend Michael Schumacher makes push ups during the charity football match between Nazionale Piloti and biggALLSTARS at Brita Arena on July 8, 2009 in Wiesbaden, Germany
Michael Schumacher of Germany and Holzhauer Racing Team rides his bike during the International German Championship IDM training session at Sachsenring racetrack on June 12, 2009 in Hohenstein-Ernstthal, Germany
The Mercedes GP Petronas Formula One team have confirmed that 7-times Formula One World Champion Michael Schumacher will make his racing return in 2010 with the Silver Arrows team. Above: Schumacher poses on December 23, 2009 in Brackley, England

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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