Schumacher pays tribute to Fangio

Helmet of 1956 Formula One World Champion Juan Manual Fangio (ARG). Galleria Ferrari, Maranello, Italy, Monday 13 September 2010.

Helmet of 1956 Formula 1 World Champion Juan Manual Fangio

Jun.25 (GMM) Seven times F1 World Champion Michael Schumacher on Friday paid tribute to Juan Manuel Fangio, the Argentine legend whose record of five world championships he matched and then broke earlier this decade.

Friday in Valencia, the scene of practice for this weekend’s European Grand Prix, was the 100th anniversary of the late and great Fangio’s birth.

Speaking at Valencia, Mercedes GP driver Schumacher recalled the early 90s, when he actually met Fangio at a DTM race a few years before he died.

“I was struck by how youthful he still looked, even though he was already into his eighties,” the 42-year-old told

“From his physical coordination and the alertness of his eyes, you could see what a great racing driver he must have been,” said Schumacher

Of Fangio’s 51 grands prix, Fangio started from the front row on 48 occasions and won 24 times.

He died aged 84 in 1995.