- Michael Schumacher suffered a near-fatal brain injury while skiing in 2013.
- Seven-time champion’s brother Ralf has ‘changed’, says Johnny Herbert
- Herbert also thinks Schumacher, 54, would have had a promising media career
A former Formula 1 star has revealed that Michael Schumacher’s tragic accident left his brother Ralf “very different”.
The seven-time world champion – widely considered the best the sport has ever seen – suffered an accident while skiing in the Alps with his family, hitting his head on a rock in 2013.
After being rushed to hospital, he was put in a medically induced coma for 250 days before returning home, having suffered a near-fatal brain injury.
Since then he has lived a very private life with his family in Switzerland, and few have seen or visited Schumacher, and even some friends and relatives have been kept in the dark by his relatives in order to avoid leaks into the press.
Former F1 driver Johnny Herbert – Schumacher’s teammate at Benetton – has described how Ralf has been affected by his brother’s current health condition.
Michael Schumacher is ‘not close’ to himself, says former teammate Johnny Herbert
Herbert (pictured) raced alongside the German great for Benetton and met his brother, Ralf, while working for Sky
Ralf Schumacher has ‘matured’ and had to ‘change a lot’ to cope with what happened to his brother
“When Ralf Schumacher was at Sky Germany, we met often,” Herbert said. Grosvenor Sports.
“Ralf had to do a lot of things for and with the family given what happened to Michael.
“He has matured. He is now very different from the person he was as a driver.
“He’s a good human being now. He has changed a lot after having to deal with the current situation with his brother.
While Schumacher’s life has remained out of the spotlight, there has been speculation about his condition, with the world remaining largely in the dark about the German great.
French journalist Roger Benoit, a close friend of Schumacher, claimed the 54-year-old’s case was “hopeless” in a tragic health update earlier in September – with Herbert saying he was a “horrible” update.
He added: “There is never any news. What we do know is that we never hear positive news.
“It’s the horrible thought that he still isn’t able to be close to the Michael we all remember. And it’s very sad.
Herbert added that Ralf – also an expert – had to do a lot to help the Schumacher family.
Schumacher fell and hit his head on a rock while skiing in Méribel in 2013, leaving him with a near-fatal brain injury.
The German is one of the greatest F1 drivers of all time, having won seven world titles
Herbert, who has regularly appeared on Sky Sports F1 coverage over the past decade, believes his former teammate would have had a successful media career, saying his “outspoken” nature would have shone through on screen.
“He would have been frank. He was always very aware of what you can and what you can’t do.
“His character was always in your face, telling you directly if you had done something to him on the track.
“Remember Spa with David Coulthard. It would have been very good.