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Michael Schumacher receives an award in Germany

Former German Formula 1 driver Michael Schumacher, seven-time world champion, received the award from his home state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW


Former German Formula 1 driver Michael Schumacher, seven-time world champion, received the award from his home state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) on Wednesday, which was collected by his wife and daughter at the ceremony held in Cologne.

“Today we honor a man who not only stands out for his sporting achievements. But above all, we pay tribute to Michael Schumacher beyond the races and beyond the spotlights,” said North Rhine-Westphalia Prime Minister Hendrik Wüst.

With the 53-year-old seven-time world champion shielded from the public eye since his serious skiing accident in December 2013, his wife Corinna and daughter Gina received the award at Motorworld Cologne. However, his son Mick, also an F1 driver, did not attend the ceremony, apparently because he was unwell.

Wüst called Schumacher a person “with a big heart and for whom it was important to think of others”, highlighting his family’s donations for the victims of the 2004 tsunami in Asia and last year’s floods in and around the NRW.

Jean Todt, Schumacher’s team principal at Ferrari and a former FIA president, gave a laudatory speech for the driver, who grew up in Kerpen near Cologne before moving to Switzerland with his family.

“Through his victories and successes, he became a true citizen of the world who worked closely with people from many different cultures,” said Todt. “’But he never forgot where his roots were – about 30 kilometers from here – and he always stayed grounded,’ he added.

“I am proud to call Michael my friend and to have a very close friendship with his family,” explained the Frenchman, who named the family “an inspiration to many people.” Todt, who is one of the few people with access to the former pilot, acknowledged his desire to have given the honor to the German in person: “We miss him here, and not just on days like today,” he said.