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MD Readers Weigh in on F1 Legend Michael Schumacher’s Motorcycle Racing

Last week Gabe asked our readers if they would be willing to risk injuries from crashing and keep racing if they had the wealth of 40-year-old F1 legend Michael Schumacher. The typical response was a resounding (and some felt, most obvious) yes! Here are the responses:

  • If I was a 40 year old billionaire, I would most certainly not be racing motorcycles. Instead, I would buy a 118 Wallypower and cruise the world with a hand full of friends and beautiful women, along with the latest high tech weapons to blow somalian pirates out of the water, literally.
  • So if your rich should give up riding??? At what dollar amount should you stop???
  • I think what Michael should do is track days just like the rest of us old buggers. he may be able to go quickly on two wheels but is past his prime. Perhaps they have local clubs like we do here in the states where he could compete, and possible win without risking his neck.

    Why not have fun with it on a less competitive level. If he still wants serious racing he should be in the European Touring Car races, those guy’s are very-very serious cpmpetitors.
    Michael is not going to be a Champion in the German Superbike series–give it a rest old boy…

  • Hell ya I would! I would love to retire young as a billionaire and race motorcycles. How did you know?
    As far as Schumacher, if he was scared of getting hurt he would have never started racing Superbikes. He knows the risks better than anybody.

  • As a 39-year-old thousandaire, there are only three things keeping me from racing:

    A lack of time off.
    A lack of funds.
    A lack of talent.

    Michael Schumacher has all three of those things; I can’t imagine that I would stop if I were him.

  • Like many motorcycle road racing afficionados, I have developed a distinct disdain for FIA F1 racing over the years. Watching the overpaid prima donna types of that pinnacle of auto racing tends to irk me, especially when contemplating the stunted career opportunities of fabulously talented AMA racers, e.g. Jake Holden, Geoff May and Josh Hayes, all of whom would have been ecstatic to earn just 1% of Schumacher’s salary. On a happy footnote, those three gents are finally getting some recognition. It used to nauseate me to watch Schumi’s tantrums when another driver had ruined his qualifying lap, so when he finally hung up his flameproof suit I thought: “Good riddance!” I have since altered my opinion of M.S. substantially. What could be easier than for him to just rest on his laurels, while offering sarcastic commentary about his erstwhile competitors? Instead, he goes motorcycle racing and does amazingly well; really using his formidable talent and brushing aside the obvious setback that comes from being in his late thirties before even trying to get up to steam on a bike. I admire him for having the stamina and drive to pursue the goal of scoring well in upper eschelons of two-wheeled racing. His lap times on the Ducati GP machine were amazing; far superior to some seasoned journos with extensive racing backgrounds who also got a chance to ride this exotic. I wish him well and good luck in his endeavors…………… and help bring some of the F1 bucks over to FIM!!!
  • Cheeky sod…
    He’s almost 40 why doesn’t max pursue his hobbies since hell never win
    a WSBK title…LOL

    As an ex pro athlete, it doesnt end with the career. I’m living it.
    The fire still is there, and without that pushing it life can become
    dull real fast. The hardest job an athlete of considerable standing is
    nothing he does competing, but when he is done competing. Believe it.

    Should MS just sit around watching his wealth earn interest he can’t
    spend fast enough?
    Hell no!

    Heal quick Shumi and get back at there boy!!

  • Uh….Yea. I would, I mean do. Age 47, still racing. Biaggi?….what-ev. If you enjoy roadracing, only quit when you can’t see…..
  • why not!
  • In the immortal words of Steve McQueen, “Racing is life……
    everything before or after is just waiting. ” With nearly unlimited
    funds to pay for parts, tires, bikes, track time, equipment, haulers
    and entry fees, I can think of few better ways to have the kind of fun
    that the speed set likes to get involved in.

  • Of course he should race bikes. Your article states he has the financial means to support himself should he get hurt. How many of us would have been screwed had we gotten hurt racing? Everything I’ve read says he’s fast on a bike. Why should anyone give up on a dream?
  • I’m a 47-year-old non-billionaire and I fight to be able to afford my hobby.
    Would I keep racing? Do bears sh-t in the woods?

  • Hell no…
  • Would I keep racing if you were a 40-year-old billionaire? No. But that lack of drive, risk taking, competitiveness and ambition is precisely why I’m not a world famous champion athlete.
  • Yes, I would race or do any thing to my hearts content. I think you have more of a chance of dieing just being in traffic on the highway.
  • send my name and address to his rich, beautiful widow!!!!
  • So it makes perfect sense that a 40 yr old pauper can risk his neck racing bikes?
  • No matter how rich, how famous, or how old…once a competitor-always a competitor. Could have been something boring.Like on a golf course, a new business venture, or a TV personality, but Schumacher chose motorcycles for his competitive outlet after retiring from F1. Thank you Mr. Schumacher!
  • Simple. I’m 41, if Honda or ANYONE else asked me to race ANYWHERE – I would.
  • Absolutely!!! Looks like he is truly living dream. There is nothing tragic if something bad happens to you while your doing something you love….besides he can afford his on private medical staff if he chose to do so.
  • Ummm, yah. Its his life & sounds like he likes to live it.
  • Yes, I would keep racing. Feeling alive has nothing to do with how much money you have.
  • Should Michael Schumacher continue to ride and race motorcycles at the age of 40? Basically, why the heck not – what else does the guy have to live for or look forward to other than sitting on his butt and worrying about where his money and investments are? Sound kinda’ boring, doesn’t it?
  • Well, everyone knows if you race , you ARE going to crash. If I was in his shoes, I would do the same, continue racing and pursuing his dream. Sounds like from Max Biaggi’s comment, he is a little jealous.

    Sure, if he wants to. Just because he’s got money and fame that shouldn’t keep one from experiencing life the way they want to. Just what’s money got to do with it?

    Hell, yes, I’d keep racing if I were as rich and talented as Schumacher!
    Racing on a track is far safer than most street riding. If Schumacher is crashing often, he may be riding or trying to compete at a level over his head. Even a fast rider can ride dumb.
    If he progresses through the ranks at the appropriate pace and rides within his skill set, there’s no reason why his racing should be particularly dangerous.

  • I’m 40…I’m not dead. Hell ya, if I could afford to go pro racing, I sure would. Racers either give up because they become afraid of the dangers or because they aren’t able to perform at the required level. I would argue that motorcycle racing is safer than car racing. He obviously can keep up, so props to him. I hope he races into his 90’s!!
  • Hell Yes.
  • Uh, yes. Can you think of any better reason to become a 40 year old

  • I think Schumacher should live the way he wants to live and in pursuits that make him happy. That’s what we all try to do, and he has the wherewithal to do it to any extent he pleases. If Steve Fossett had grounded himself from flying, he might still be alive, but would he be happy? No one can answer that one, and no one can answer for Schumacher but himself.
  • “If he wants to break his neck at 40…” (Biaggi) I was just talking yesterday with a nurse at work. She used to work with motorcyclists who’d crashed and she said what she saw made her feel very poorly of motorcycling in general. She said they came into the hospital with dreadful injuries and lost limbs when in a car they would have been fine, even in slow speed crashes.

    Obviously being a billionaire does not make one happy. And we know that IOMTT racers race for the love of racing, so we have to conclude that Schumacher is doing what he loves to do and what we love as well, racing motorcycles.

    I had a bicycle trainer in my living room a couple of years ago and while pedaling nowhere, would put in the TT DVD and watch the Isle of Man TT races.

    Sitting home with 5 dollars or 5 billion dollars, at age 5 or age 50, is still sitting home. Men don’t like it. We have to get our spear and go hunt.

    So good on him.

    And off I go to watch Daytona for the how manyeth time. Never bores me.

  • If he wants to why not? What makes a champion is a need to compete
    isn’t it? If Max Biaggi has negative comments perhaps he could go win
    as many world championships as Michael has.

  • What’s having money have to do with racing except it gives you more and better opportunities?
  • Sure, why not? His body, his money. Beats cruising for hookers.
  • If I had billions I’d be tethered to a helicopter which would follow me around the racetrack. If I started to crash I could be plucked safely out of the air before my tender buns hit the pavement. Could be a problem if there were a bridge on the course…

    But seriously, it’s his neck and his pleasure. About the only thing I would (or could) do would be to make sure that the track is as safe as possible, maybe buy some air fence if needed. That way ALL the riders would benefit. If he’s crashing a lot then maybe some serious coaching and a bike with advanced ABS and traction control.

  • If you have 4 wheels and take away 2 what do you have?
    You have something not half as hard to do, it is more like 100 times harder to do.
    Hats off to him trying, but Michael leave it to the seasoned veterans.
    May you heal as fast as you performed in F1.

  • Maybe being 40 or a billionaire has nothing to do with it.

    People tend to get too caught up in age and money and forget and person
    can just love to compete.

    This reminds me of Jordan wanting to play baseball and people couldn’t
    understand it. Spectators and the news media had to put Jordan under a
    microscope to figure it out, after all Jordan was the best and rich
    beyonds mosts dreams. Why would he want to play baseball?

    Maybe Schumacher is human, just like the millions of weekend warriors
    that race each weekend. They race because they love it and there doesn’t
    need to be a news crew with cameras or a multi-million dollar contract
    at the end of the day to make it FUN.

  • He’s obviously an adrenaline junkie like many of us that ride bikes. He needs that bit of excitement we get from racing so if he stopped racing he would only be looking for something else to pump up his adrenaline. I say go for it while you can.
  • of course I would, motorcycling is THE biggest thing in the world. Schumacher understand the bond between man and machine like nobody else and he thriving to achieve it on a motorcycle. He has real guts!
  • I think the only reason you don’t see more 40-plus year olds racing, at their own expense, is because most of us can’t afford it. So if I were a billionaire I am sure that I would be doing a lot of things (some dangerous) that I can’t afford to do…at the moment.
  • After thinking about this for some time this morning – I come back to the
    same question. What does having money / age have to do with living, taking
    risk, and enjoying what you like. I’m 62+ and if I had the money to support
    a track/racing bike I would be there.

    What is the worst thing that can happen to someone?

    My view is; you have the mean’s (time, capabilities, knowledge, money,
    opportunity) to do something that you really want to and like and then not
    do it. Live is way to short to not do the thing you want.

  • What does being a billionaire have to do with the need for speed? I’m soon to be 65, certainly no billionaire, and am wishing I could get in some track time!
  • Well, I just turned 50 and when I turned 50 I was riding in Italy where the riding and traffic made my track days look like riding a Honda 50 in the back yard when I was i kid. Oh, my wife road also and she is 48! (don’t tell her I spilled the beans)… Now, I’m not wealthy, I’m a poor schmuck pistolsmith and I have more numbers after my name on a medical app than most of the people I ride with. Why should that keep any one from enjoying life to it’s max? Motorcycles are in our blood and maybe from time to time have caused some of that red stuff to leak out but they are life to me and as long as I can swing a leg over my Ducati I will be happy to ride.
    Good on Schumacher for putting it on the line again.

  • If I was a billionaire I would not risk my health so I might live long enough to spend even 25% of my money. But the more power to him. I hope he’s a winner!!
  • If a motorcycles get him off then yes continue riding.
  • I would go racing, even if I were a millionaire, to !
    Although I´m already 55 … But still going strong.

  • Is this really a question? If so, the obvious answer is: YES!
  • Heck yeah!
  • there is no comparison between the skills it takes to race a
    motorcycle versus the skills it takes to race a car. motorcycle
    racers deal with a much narrower margin of error than car racers and
    must be much more precise. motorcycle racers are much better
    athletes than car racers. it is far easier to switch from racing
    motorcycles to cars than to go from cars to motorcycles.

  • Racing is in his blood, he can’t drive 55.
  • To answer your question, I believe that Michael Schumacher should keep racing superbikes so long as he’s able to keep up with the field and he’s having fun.

    A man doesn’t reach the pinnacle of professional motorsports without having a fierce drive to compete and win. Obviously, that’s an urge that Schumacher still has not completely satisfied. At 40 years of age, and in good health, he’s young enough to take a few knocks in his latest racing pursuit. That he’s a billionaire is irrelevant to his situation. It doesn’t mean he has to play it safe and behave more responsibly (whatever that means in this context) and if anything, his wealth should allow him the freedom to do whatever his heart desires. If he’s seriously injured or (God forbid) killed while racing motorcycles, he has the resources in place to take care of his family for the rest of their lives.

    It’s an extraordinary freedom that Mr. Schumacher at this point in his life, and he should exercise it in the manner that provides him with the greatest degree of fulfillment.

  • Would you keep racing if you were a 40-year-old billionaire?
    Well, I’m 46 and dirt poor, so what do I know. But… Hell yes! Who could say no to such an opportunity?

  • Tough question to answer.

    I’ve been riding on the street for over 20 years. I got involved racing in CCS-FL in 2003. I high sided in 2004 and taught me this old body takes longer to heal. I’ve been back on the track since then for track days. I want to do more track days and I’m thinking of getting back into racing in the CCS-FL Formula 40 group with all the other 40+ riders.

    So back to the answer to the question – Maybe. If I did, I wouldn’t push the edge as hard as Schumacher though. I’ve found I can have fun without riding the hairy edge of traction, therefore minimizing the risk of high siding. Not everyone is a Miguel Duhamel (who BTW is close to my age and someone I respect for what he is still doing).

  • If I was 40 (I’m close) and had a billion (not so close) I would race bikes, boats, planes, skateboards whatever was fun… At his stage and place in life, thrills must be harder to find every day. I think adding a really big name to Superbike can only help the racing series. I would like to see him try the Erzberg…
  • hells yea!!! Im 38 no where near a billionaire and I race motorcycles every chance i get, hey maybe thats why im no where near a billionare!
  • Oh yea! Go for it Michael!
    If I had his money, I’d be touring the world on a big trailie BMW or KTM.
    If I had his money and his talent, I’d be racing as much as I liked and in the off season touring the southern hemisphere on a big trailie BMW or KTM.
    Unfortunately I don’t have either, and I have a full time job, a wife and two kids, but I still get in as much riding as possible, a track day now and then, and off road ride with my teenage son.

  • I would do whatever I wanted, just as I am doing. Of course I happen to be 61 and a hundredaire, but so what?
  • Michael is a remarkable man. Yes, if I where a Billionaire, or maybe just a Millionaire, I’d go racing for fun.
  • Does it really matter what we think. Would you sky dive? What if it were free? Maybe you would and maybe you wouldn’t. But if he wants to race, he races. With his money, it would be as if it were free. And if I could do whatever I wanted because cost was no object, perhaps I would race too!!!
  • If by racing you mean hiring you hot females for short periods of time, buying extremely exotic motorcycles and doing track days (probably free just for the tracks exposure) all over the world just cause, then yes. If you mean going up against the cream of the crop racers less than half your age and more desire, and lets face it, bigger kahonies, then I think I would take my custom made, short term girlfriend, in my exotic car and go home.
  • I was never really a fan I Michael when he was racing F1 cars……But the more I hear about him riding bikes, trying to race and crashing and getting back on the horse….I’m starting to have a lot of respect for him as a person and racer. Best of luck to him motorcylcing needs stars like him!…just as it seems he needs motorcycles to get that fix of speed!

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