• Sep 10th 2006 at 4:26PM
  • 26
Sorry for the delay in getting this news out, but we were in shock. OK, this was hardly a surprise, but still, hearing those words from Michael's lips was surreal. After winning today's race at Monza, 7-time Formula 1 World Champion Michael Schumacher announced that he is retiring from racing at the end of this season. He also mentioned that he will continue on with Ferrari in some capacity next year, although his position was not specified.

Michael made sure to point out that this season is hardly over, however. He is still planning on using the remaining 3 races on the schedule to capture his 8th championship. Indeed with his win today, he closed the gap to series leader Fernando Alonso to just 2 points. Full release with quotes after the jump.

Formula 1 release:

Schumacher confirms his retirement

10 September 2006 - After an emotional win in Sunday's Italian Grand Prix at Monza, Michael Schumacher has announced he will retire from race driving at the end of this season. His relationship with Ferrari will, however, continue.

"Words are not enough and whatever I could say now will never fully express how much I love this fascinating world of motor sport and all it has given me," said Schumacher. "From go-karting to Formula One, I have lived through moments that I will never forget. I am profoundly grateful for everything I have had. I want to thank everyone who has accompanied me, supported and inspired me, right back to the days of my childhood.

"Above all, a special thanks goes to (my wife) Corinna and our two children, who have given me the strength to do what I have done. All these years in Formula One have been amazing, especially those spent alongside my friends in the Scuderia. Soon my future will belong to my family, while I am happy to be still part of Ferrari. But for now, what matters is this world championship."

Schumacher has been with Ferrari for 11 seasons, securing five of his drivers' titles with the team and contributing to six of their constructors' crowns. No other driver has won as much with the Italian squad, who were keen to pay tribute to their great driver.

"I had always said that the decision to retire would be his alone, but now that decision has been taken, I feel a sense of sadness," commented Ferrari President and CEO, Luca di Montezemolo. "We have lived through some unforgettable times together, some good some bad, achieving results that will be hard to equal. To Michael goes the thanks of everyone in the company and supporters of Ferrari for all the dedication he has shown to our colours, for the determination and courage with which he has worked, which has provided immense satisfaction. He is both sincere and passionate and has earned the affection of all of us and of our fans. His relationship with Maranello will continue, albeit in a different form and I am very happy about that."

"Michael has been the author of a unique chapter in the history of Formula One and of Ferrari in particular. It has yet to reach its conclusion and what he has achieved extends over and above the results obtained," added Managing Director, Jean Todt. "He is an exceptional man and will become a legend as a driver. For me personally, he is a great friend and together we have lived through unrepeatable experiences. Having had the opportunity to work alongside him has been and will continue to be a privilege."

Ferrari will announce a new team structure at the end of the year, including a definition of Schumacher's new role.

[Source: Formula 1]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 9 Years Ago
      It's time. He's done great things and great things for the sport, but the past couple of years have been kind of rocky from a sportsmanship point of view. Leave while most people are still behind you instead of using any means fair or foul, to dominate.

      I don't know if we'll ever see somebody like him again, and I'm glad to have followed his career.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I don't understand most of the rationale behind this but if he's tired of it, he's tired. He's given alot and its time for him to put his feet up. (Ek verstaan nie hoekom mense so aangaan nie. Hulle bly darem 'n klomp ma se poese. Die naaiers moet almal in hulle moer kruip.)
      • 9 Years Ago
      While I should have added a smiley or two to show sarcasm to my post I find it hard to believe anyone would think I was serious, not joking or trolling...

      He could pull a Nigel Mansell and try Indy cars or something, but I don't honestly think he would try going only left.

      All kidding aside, I do hope the guy stays out of the driver seat from here on out and doesn't pull a Jordan, Rice, or any other pathetic comeback that only serves to tarnish some great memories.
      • 9 Years Ago
      #15 Haha well funny that you say that because earlier when asked if Ralf knew Micheal's decision he said, "Me and my brother are not that close. Maybe I'll get a text message on Sunday."

      I'm sure Ralf is fuming. He should kick himself in the head when he fired Willi Weber. He got him 20 million dollars at Toyota!! I don't think he even deserves that much! Make it a bit lower than Truli because I think Truli has performed better and use the rest of the money to make your cars faster and reliable!!

      As for Micheal, what a great man. Sure he has some bad moments in his life (hitting Damon Hill, recent Monaco thing, and others) but the man is magical! He was stuck in 5th gear for 40 laps of the 1994 Catalunya Grand Prix and finished 2nd!!!

      I hope he wasn't forced out of retirement because they signed Kimmi on board...be a shame for Ferrari to just force him off the team when he pretty much MADE the team. Jean Todt and Ross Brawn should leave with Micheal if that was the case...
      • 9 Years Ago
      I think he's going to go straight into GP Masters and race against Mansell, Eddy Cheever, and Martin Brundle. He'll have to carry about 60lbs of ballast to compensate for their fat arses, but I'm absolutely 100% convinced that's what his next move will be. No I'm not, I just made that up.

      What was funny about his interview though, was when he was thanking his family he mentioned his mom, dad, wife, etc, but NO RALPH! He must be fuming. Poor Ralph.
      • 9 Years Ago
      #15. - Ralph has said that he and his big bro aren't that close. I'm surprised he didn't thank Ross Brawn, who has been with him since Benneton, or Jean Todt, who seemed the most emotionally moved after the race.

      • 9 Years Ago
      Go Kimi!
      • 9 Years Ago
      The greatest driver that I have actually seen race in a live race.
      • 9 Years Ago
      You have to give MS a lot of credit as a real team builder. Ferrari was no where until he showed up and revamped everything. He's also terrific with everyone on the team, no matter how trivial their job. He is also no prima donna, unlike like many drivers before him.

      He's also happy EVERY time he wins, even though he makes $80 mil per year and has won 90 times. Many US pro athletes are spoiled babies in comparison.
      • 8 Years Ago
      He should come out from retirement and continue racing. F1 is nothing without him. Even michael jordan came out of retiremen
      • 9 Years Ago
      #1, Michael has already made it quite clear of what he thinks of NASCAR. That it is boring, with outdated technology in all-too-heavy 'cars'.

      If you want something akin to what real stock car racing is like (at least the closest to stock car currently available as opposed to automotive equivalent to roller skating 'round and 'round in an oval)), you look to the BTCC or the WTCC. If a car is FWD in the showroom, it races as FWD. If AWD, as AWD, etc. Real Headlights, 2.0l engines (whether 4 or 6 cylinder). It also quite nicely shows that no one format (4 cyl/6cyl, RWD/FWD/AWD dominates).

      Retired 1996 SCCA NEDiv Solo I Hillclimb Champion - Rally Class
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