Again, Weber tells ‘best friend’ to quit

Wed, 2 August 2006, 09:25

Michael Schumacher’s manager, Willi Weber, has now told at least four separate news outlets that the 37-year-old Ferrari driver should quit if he secures an eighth title this season.

Earlier this month, Weber first publicised his advice to Schumacher in ‘Bild am Sonntag’. Then, at Hockenheim, he repeated a similar tale to both ‘Reuters’ and Germany’s ‘Premiere’ television station.

Now, following the Hockenheim triumph and a further six-point bite into Fernando Alonso’s 2006 lead, major German newspaper ‘Bild’ is running near-identical Willi Weber quotes in a new interview.

”Michael and I often talk,” the 64-year-old was quoted as saying.

”In one of our last discussions I recommended to him in a completely honest and straightforward way — ‘Michael, if you become world champion again, then stop’.”

Weber said he offers the advice to his multi-millionaire charge ‘as my best friend, not as a manager’.

He explained that, understandably with a reported 20 per cent stake in Schumacher’s salaries, his usual advice to the seven time champion is to sign on.

Weber continued: ”But this time it is different. If he retires as champion, he will be remembered not only as a king, but as an eternal emperor.

”He would be greater than anyone who went before him.”

The only logical question now, then, is to ask whether Schumacher normally takes Mr. 20 Percent’s advice?

”Very, very often,” Weber grinned. ”We have never, ever, argued. He is my best friend.

”But never before has my advice been about the end of his career.”

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