Formula 1: Michael Schumacher to retire at the end of the season image

Seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher will retire from Formula 1 at the end of the 2012 season, after Mercedes signed with Lewis Hamilton.

“I have decided to retire at the end of the season. I still feel I am capable of competing against the best but the time sometimes comes to say goodbye and this time it might be forever.”

“In the past six years I have learned a lot about myself. For example, that you can open yourself without losing focus. That losing can be both more difficult and more instructive than winning.”

Michael Schumacher won 91 races in a career that began in 1991 and spanned 19 seasons, helping to revive Ferrari’s fortunes after he joined them in 1996.
The German world champion retired for the first time in 2006 before returning to the sport in 2010 on a three-year contract with Mercedes.

The 43-year-old is currently 12th in the Formula 1 drivers’ championship. A third place in Valencia was the best Schumacher could achieve with Mercedes.