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January 3, 1969 – F1 World Champ Michael Schumacher is born

Michael Schumacher at the 1997 German Grand Prix. By Cord Rodefeld from Ulm, Germany – Hockenheim 1997, CC BY-SA 2.0

Seven-time Formula One World Champion Michael Schumacher was born on this day in 1969 in Hürth, West Germany. Schumacher’s started his first F1 race, the 1991 Belgian Grand Prix, after qualifying for the seventh position. Despite high expectation, come race day, Schumacher wouldn’t make it past the first lap due to clutch problems. This certainly didn’t foreshadow the rest of his career.

After winning his first F1 championship in 1994, he doubled down in 1995, racing both winning seasons with Benetton. The year after that he moved to Ferrari. Schumacher barely missed titles in 1997 and 1998, then broke his leg in 1999, putting an end to yet another title run. He returned in 2000, hungry for more gold, and gold he got. He would win that year’s championship, as well as those of 2001, 2002, 2003 and 2004. The five consecutive wins would be his last season victories. In 2012 he hung up his racing goggles, retiring from the sport after one of the most successful careers many had ever witnessed.

Schumacher at the 2012 US Grand Prix. By Gussisaurio – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

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