Schumacher, 52, won seven world titles in a stellar career, but long before he was prominent in the sport Willi Webber had spotted his potential. The German managed his compatriot for much of his career, and was largely credited for turning the star into one of the most highest-paid sports stars on the planet.
However, Webber has now lashed out after claiming he’s been prevented from visiting Schumacher since his harrowing skiing accident in 2013. The incident, which took place on a family holiday in Grenoble, left the star in a medically induced coma.
He was later transferred to Lausanne University Hospital in Switzerland before being released to continue his rehabilitation at home. His wife Corrina and family have since opted not to comment publicly on his welfare.
Last September, the Netflix documentary Schumachergave an insight into the impact the ordeal was having on the family, but stopped short of providing an update on the Ferrari icon himself. And Weber, 80, has now lamented the apparent secrecy.
“I tried hundreds of times to contact Corinna [Schumacher’s wife] and she didn’t answer,” he told La Gazzetta dello Sport. “I called Jean Todt [Schumacher’s ex-boss at Ferrari] to ask him if I should go to the hospital and he told me to wait – it’s too early.
“I called the next day and no one answered. I didn’t expect behaviour like that and I’m still angry about it. They kept me out, telling me it’s too early, well now it’s too late. It’s been nine years. Maybe they should just say it the way it is.”
Webber, who has also managed the likes of Naomi Campbell and Claudia Schiffer, did concede that he had empathy with the family’s initial stance, but not with what he claims to be dishonesty: “I could understand the situation initially as I always did everything I could for Michael to protect his private life. But since then we have only heard lies from them.”