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Ferrari Clubs plan Schumacher birthday event

NEWS STORY
02/01/2014

Ferrari Clubs are to hold an event outside the Grenoble hospital where Michael Schumacher is being treated.

In a brief post on the Italian team's Facebook page, the Maranello outfit, with whom the legendary German won five titles in a career that spanned eleven seasons, wrote:

"In these difficult days and on the occasion of his birthday the Scuderia Ferrari Clubs want to show their support for Michael Schumacher, organising tomorrow a silent and respectful event all in Red at the Grenoble University Hospital Center."

Tomorrow (Friday) marks the German's 45th birthday, and while there has been no official statement today it is understood his condition remains stable. Yesterday, his spokeswoman, Sabine Kehm, said that for the foreseeable future there will only be official updates should his condition change.

Meanwhile, his family has taken to his official website to thank race fans for their support.

"Following Michael's skiing accident, we would like to thank the people from all around the world who have expressed their sympathy and sent their best wishes for his recovery," read a brief statement. "They are giving us great support.

"We all know he is a fighter and will not give up. Thank You."

Ferrari subsequently announced that it will host a special birthday tribute to the German on its website tomorrow.

Four days after his accident, it has now been revealed that the German was assisting a friend's child when he fell. A report in Germany’s Bild newspaper rubbishes previous claims that he was 'speeding' and in fact indicates his accident was the direct result of helping others.

"Suddenly the daughter of a friend crashed," reports the German publication. "Schumi helped the girl, leaving the groomed (on piste) area and moved about 20 metres in the deep snow between the slopes Biche and Mauduit. Both sides of the groomed slopes are marked with flags. Had Schumacher not seen the instructions?

"What is certain is that between 10.50 and 11:00 - a quarter of an hour earlier than previously thought - misfortune struck. Schumi, also wearing upper body protectors in addition to his helmet, hit a rock covered by the snow.”

It is understood the situation was further complicated by the fact that the seven-time F1 champion was distracted by the binding on one of his boots and was consequently unable to break his fall.

It is ironic, though not at all surprising, that man who was so remorseless on track, now faces the biggest battle of his life after coming to the aid of a friend's child.

Chris Balfe:

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