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EXCLUSIVE: Michael Schumacher outlook 'not good' as care costs spiral to £8million-a-year

Unfortunately they also give false hopes to many involved people."The reality is hard for the family to bear.

Former Ferrari boss Luca di Montezemolo said today that the health of the seven-time Formula One World Champion is not good.

The German is still receiving intensive treatment far from the public eye at his home in Switzerland following severe head injuries that he suffered in a skiing accident in France in December 2013.

"I have news and unfortunately it is not good," Montezemolo told reporters without giving any further details.

"Life is strange. He was a fantastic driver and only had one accident with Ferrari in 1999", the former Ferrari chairman said.

It comes as motor racing insiders say that the medical team of 15 experts who care for him around the clock remain optimistic of a breakthrough.

Insiders say he remains immobile and cannot speak but his family, led by devoted wife Corinna, have never given up hope that one day he will come back to them.

The clan were infuriated at a report in a German celebrity magazine shortly before Christmas which claimed the Ferrari superstar was now taking small walking steps at his £35 million  mansion in Gland, Switzerland.

There was a fierce public denial.  The official line is that Schumi continues to show "small encouraging signs," but with no detail of what these might be.

The vast half-a-billion pound fortune Schumacher accrued during his years at the top means money is no object when it comes to caring for him.

It is understood the family have consulted with the greatest neurological experts in Europe and the USA.  The.prognosis remains the same : only time will tell.

One F1 insider said: "Hope a recovery is the glue binding Corinna and the children, Mick and Gina Maria, together.

"They have never wavered in their belief that one day Michael would come back to them.

"His father Rolf moved into house built in the extensive grounds to be near him all the time.  If love was all it took, Michael would have been up and about months ago."

But the trauma he suffered while out skiing on December 29 2013 was so complex and so severe that he remains dependent on his carers.

They turn him to prevent bedsores, wash him, massage his atrophied muscles and hook him up to the expensive medical machinery which helps him breathe at night and monitors all his vital signs.

So far it is estimated his recovery has taken a 20 million pound bite out of his bank account.  But top sponsors like Mercedes have never deserted him and he continues to earn money even now.

But perhaps a sign that the family knows it is in for the long haul came last year when Corinna sold his private jet and a holiday home they shared in Norway.

She has also taken over the financial reins of his empire and is advised on a daily basis on investments and cash flows by a battery of lawyers.

One source close to the family said: "While they wait for the breakthrough the practical side of Corinna has come to the fore.  She is now in charge of Schmacher Inc. until the day he is well enough to resume his role.

"The family have been astonished at the outpouring of love for him from around the world.  Only a few close friends and family get to see Michael now, but they pulse out the love of millions at his bedside."

FIA president Jean Todt said in December that Schumacher was 'still fighting'. Ross Brawn added: "We just keep praying every day that he'll recover to a stage where?it's slow, but there's always hope."

Updates have been difficult to come by otherwise, both officially and unofficially, with the Schumacher family even suing German tabloids in July for posting reports Michael had spoken his first words since the accident.

His manager Sabine Kehm criticised the magazine which reported he had begun walking.

"Unfortunately we are forced by a recent press report to clarify that the assertion that Michael could move again is not true," she said at the time.

"Such speculation is irresponsible, because given the seriousness of his injuries, his privacy is very important for Michael. Unfortunately they also give false hopes to many involved people."

The reality is hard for the family to bear. But living without hope for him would be even worse.

Express
04/02
20 Points
1

Ski tragedy as Brit woman dies after hitting tree on the 'Bear' piste at Le Plagne

Two skiers were killed near Val d'Isere on 5 January after being swept away in separate avalanches. Both were found by rescue workers under 1.5m of snow.A 30-year-old skier from the Czech Republic was also killed at Saint-Colomban-des-Villards after going off piste in the Les Sybelles area on the same day. He lost balance and smashed into the slope.Despite wearing a helmet, Louis suffered injuries to his face and, according to mountain rescuers, also sustained internal injuries to his chest.

The 53-year-old woman, who had not yet been identified, was on the so-called 'Bear' piste at Le Plagne, which is hugely popular with visitors from the UK. 

She travelled towards the tree “at quite a speed, but she was not able to control her skis,” said a local police spokesman. 

The Bear run ('Ours' in French) is classified as blue, meaning it is of 'moderate' difficulty, just one up from the beginners' red run. 

Medics and police officers scambled to the scene soon after the alarm was raised by mobile phone at around 11.30am, but the woman died at the scene. 

There was a similar incident in the French Alps just before Christmas, when a British teenager died in nearby Meribel.

Louis Ross, 17, was with a group of friends when he lost control on a slope in the same resort where former Formula One world champion racing driver Michael Schumacher suffered a brain injury in 2013.

French police said Louis, a sixth former at Canford School in Wimborne, Dorset, was going too fast down an intermediate blue piste despite signs asking skiers to slow down ahead of an intersection. He lost balance and smashed into the slope.

Despite wearing a helmet, Louis suffered injuries to his face and, according to mountain rescuers, also sustained internal injuries to his chest. There had not been significant snowfall for nearly two weeks at the resort, and police believe the hardness of the piste contributed to the severity of the accident.

Police in La Plagne said there would be a 'full investigation' into the latest incident. Avalanches have also caused disaster in the Alps this season. Two skiers were killed near Val d'Isere on 5 January after being swept away in separate avalanches. Both were found by rescue workers under 1.5m of snow.

A 30-year-old skier from the Czech Republic was also killed at Saint-Colomban-des-Villards after going off piste in the Les Sybelles area on the same day. Two days earlier, on January 3, an avalanche near Chamonix resort saw two Lithuanian mountain climbers also killed.

The avalanche risk for several resorts in the Alps remains at four out of five, which means avalanches are 'likely to be triggered on many slopes even if only light loads are applied'

Express
02/02
1 Points
1

British skier dies at Alps resort near where Michael Schumacher had tragic accident

The 53-year-old skier, who has not yet been identified, was on the so-called 'Bear' piste at La Plagne when witnesses saw her travelling towards the tree "at quite a speed".

One person described her as being "not able to control her skis" before the tragic accident happened, according to local police.

The 'Bear' run is classified as blue, meaning it is of moderate difficulty and just one up from the beginners' red run.

Help was called at around 11.30am but the woman died at the scene.

The incident followers a similar accident in the French Alps where a British teenager died just before Christmas in nearby Meribel.

Louis Ross, 17, was with a group of friends when he lost control on a slope in the same resort where Schumacher crashed in 2013.

Mr Ross, a sixth former at Canford School in Wimborne, Dorset, was going too fast down an intermediate blue piste despite signs asking skiers to slow down ahead of an intersection, police said at the time.

He was said to have lost his balance balance before crashing into the slope.

The teenager, who was wearing a helmet, suffered injuries to his face and sustained internal damage to his chest, it has been reported.

Police believe the hardness of the piste contributed to the severity of the accident.

Police in La Plagne said there would be a "full investigation" into the latest incident.

F1 legend Schumacher is still recovering from traumatic injuries he suffered during a ski accident more than two years ago.

His recovery has been shrouded in secrecy since he was released from hospital six months after the skiing crash.

Express
02/02
3 Points
1

Sports Renault complete takeover of Lotus Formula One team after paying off debts

Other petitioning creditors said they had also been paid in full.The case had been adjourned repeatedly to allow Renault time to decide their F1 future and complete the takeover of a team that employs some 480 people at their factory in Enstone.

And it means the engine supplier to former world champions Red Bull this season are returning to F1 as a full constructor by buying back the team they previously owned.

A High Court hearing yesterday formally dismissed an insolvency petition that would have put the team into administration.

The team was sold by Renault to Luxembourg-based Genii Capital, who renamed it Lotus, after a Singapore Grand Prix race-fixing scandal that rocked the sport in 2009.

As Benetton and then Renault, the team had won world titles with Michael Schumacher and Fernando Alonso.

The share purchase agreement (SPA) that made Renault the controlling shareholder had been due for completion on December 16 but the court heard that the acquisition was finalised only late last Friday.

Jeremy Bamford, counsel for HMRC, confirmed payment had been received and cleared. Other petitioning creditors said they had also been paid in full.

The case had been adjourned repeatedly to allow Renault time to decide their F1 future and complete the takeover of a team that employs some 480 people at their factory in Enstone.

Express
21/01
7 Points
1

Pope Francis prays for F1 legend Michael Schumacher to recover from devastating ski crash

The Formula 1 icon was left fighting for his life following a crash on the slopes of the French Alps in December 2013. 

His condition remains a mystery as he receives round-the-clock treatment for his extensive head injuries in a specially made rehab unit at home in Switzerland. 

The Pope’s prayer came as he backed a road safety campaign organised by Formula One

Jean Todt, the president of Formula One’s governing body FIA, discussed Schumacher’s condition with the pontiff in a meeting this week. 

Speaking to Radio Vatican, Todt said: "I asked him if he wanted to say a prayer and he happily accepted."

Todt was in charge of the Ferrari F1 team during the glittering period Schumacher won five F1 driver's championships.

Two years on from Schumacher’s accident and vigils have been held across the world for the seven-time F1 world champion. 

He spent six months in an induced coma, following his accident in the French resort of Meribel, before returning to his home on the shores of Lake Geneva for treatment. 

The family is reportedly shelling out £115,000 a week on his care which includes a dedicated team of medical professionals working round the clock to aid his recovery. 

There has been a near-total news blackout on the 47-year-old’s condition, a decision defended by the family lawyer Felix Damm, who has continually requested respect for the Schumacher family’s privacy. 

Reports that Schumacher was learning to walk again in December 2015 were criticised by his long-term manager Sabine Kehm for giving fans false hope. 

Although his management have previously said he is making “encouraging small steps”. 

Devoted wife Corrina, 46, has stood by her husband throughout the ordeal. 

The couple, who married in 1995, have two children and quietly had their 20th wedding anniversary last August.

In previous interviews, the racing legend called his wife his “guardian angel”. 

It’s believed Mrs Schumacher has taken control of her husband’s business affairs after supporting him throughout his career. 

She has remained media shy for most of their marriage, allowing her husband to enjoy the limelight, but is fiercely protective of the family. 

She has launched legal proceedings against three German tabloids over stories about her husband’s condition

Just days before the accident, Mr Schumacher revealed the couple had never had a serious fight. 

He said: "It’s because we shared the same values. 

“During all the time I was racing she was my guardian angel.”

Schumacher is the most successful F1 driver of all time, with records for the most amount of championships, race wins and pole positions.

During his illustrious career who drove for Jordan, Benetton, Ferrari and Mercedes. 

The Mercedes team have had featured the #KeepFightingMichael hashtag on the cars of their two drivers Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg.

Express
15/01
8 Points
1

Man saved by Michael Schumacher operation after being knocked out by hockey ball

Doctors say super-fit Sam Owens, 28, would have died had he not thought of the tragic death of cricketer Phillip Hughes.The Australian cricketer had died days earlier after also being struck with a a ball.Mr Owens had blood pouring from his ear but remained conscious and took himself out of the hockey game.

Doctors say super-fit Sam Owens, 28, would have died had he not thought of the tragic death of cricketer Phillip Hughes.

The Australian cricketer had died days earlier after also being struck with a a ball.

Mr Owens had blood pouring from his ear but remained conscious and took himself out of the hockey game. But the Hughes’ death sparked fear in Mr Owens, who decided he was taking no chances and sought medical advice.

Doctors found a bleed on the brain and he was rushed to hospital for emergency surgery to remove a blood clot, taking apart part of his skull.

Mr Owens, from Staining, Lancs., said: "It was the same operation that Michael Schumacher had after his skiing accident.

"However, he wasn't as lucky as me as he didn't get seen to as quickly as he was in the middle of nowhere."

Mr Owens was captaining Blackpool Hockey Club's second team against Bolton in November 2014 when the incident happened.

His team were defending a penalty corner when the ball struck him.

Mr Owens said: "It was a short corner. We were trying to defend a penalty corner and I was trying to intercept the ball to stop them shooting.

"I got within a metre-and-a-half of the ball and the player struck the ball and it hit me straight on the left hand side of my head.

"It hit me with some force and it really hurt and I dropped my stick.

"I subbed myself off and my ear was bleeding.

"One of the lad's girlfriends who was a trainee nurse was watching and she kept my wound compressed and gave me a painkiller and kept me calm.

"After that, I thought I was OK and was chatting to my friends at half time.

"But when they asked if I wanted to go back on, I told them that I didn't feel right.

"Soon afterwards, I began feeling worse and felt woozy and in a lot of pain."

he went to Blackpool Victoria Hospital's A&E with his friend and he deteriorated rapidly.

"It felt like the left side of my face was dropping and it felt swollen and my eye was closed.

"I was in a lot of pain and it was getting worse."

A CT scan revealed a massive bleed on his brain so he was immediately sedated and rushed to Royal Preston Hospital.

He underwent a two-and-a-half hour operation was carried out to remove the blood clot and stop the bleeding.

Sam, an office manager at his dad's window firm, added: "I had a craniotomy and they peeled the skin and flesh back to make a skull flap and stop the bleeding and remove the clot.

"They then put my skull back together and I had around 29 staples in my head."

He has now made an amazing recovery and is back to full strength - but has given up hockey.

He added: "I've stopped playing hockey since the injury as the thought of it makes me feel sick, although it hasn't put me off cricket which is my real game.

"I want to urge people to take massive care when playing hockey and cricket and to not take a risk and wear headgear.

"The one year anniversary of the accident has hit me hard as it has brought it all flooding back and made me realise how close to death I actually came.

"I felt very emotional and upset and extremely lucky.

"People are very quick to knock the NHS and they have had a lot of stick this year.

"But if the NHS hadn't done such a fantastic job, I wouldn't be here today."

Express
11/01
1 Points
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