Michael Schumacher feared for his life after the death of his compatriot Ayrton Senna.
The German, 52, also suffered from insomnia after the Brazilian lost his life in a tragic accident during the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix.
The racing legend was behind Senna when the crash happened and he doubted he could race again without fear of crashing.
The driver’s new Netflix documentary titled “Schumacher” includes an old interview in which he recalls how the accident affected him.
He said: “It was two hours after the race when (the technical director) Mr. (Tom) Walkinshaw came to me after the race and told me it was going very badly.
“I said ‘no he’s in a coma but a coma doesn’t mean anything bad’. He said ‘no, that doesn’t look too good’. And then someone came to me. see later and told me ‘he is dead’ “.
“I still didn’t believe he would be dead, I couldn’t think about it. At that point, I was like “no, he’s going to be the champion”.
“He might miss a race or two and then come back. The worst was really the next two weeks because I had to accept that he was dead. “
Schumacher described how his perception of the sport changed after witnessing a fatal accident.
“Silverstone, I went there (after) and all of a sudden you see things with different eyes,” he said.
“I drove through Silverstone in a road car and I was like ‘this is a point where you could be dead, this is another point where you could be dead’.
“I was like ‘crazy you’ve always run here but there are so many points where you can fall and you can be immediately dead’ – that was the only thing I thought about.”
The seven-time champion continued, “I had no idea what the situation would be if I was going to be in the race car.
“I wasn’t sure if I could drive without thinking about it or I’m going to drive now always thinking ‘now you can be dead here, if you go here it’s gonna be bad’ and that was something very strange.
“I wake up during the night and I sleep maybe three hours a night, things like that.”
Despite Schumacher’s struggles with Senna’s death, he has had a superb career and is considered one of the greatest drivers of all time.
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