Every racer has to start somewhere, and that somewhere is a go kart. Even the legendary Michael Schumacher trained at a karting circuit. Unfortunately, Schumacher’s karting track is set to close in 2020. The reason is because it is being torn up by a mining company, despite efforts to find it a new home.
The go-karting track is situated in Kerpen-Manheim near Cologne. Schumacher, brother Ralf and four-time Formula One champion Sebastian Vettel all began their motorsport careers at that circuit.
The dispute is that the ground under the track is set to be torn up for coal as it lies on the edge of a planned mining area. Two-thirds of the land is reportedly owned by Michael Schumacher. Michael’s younger brother, Ralf Schumacher said, “There will be no new go-kart track. A joint search with (German utilities provider) RWE has not led to a new location being found. It’s a shame – both a tradition and a successful youth venture are dying at the same time.”
49-year old Michael Schumacher continues to recover at home in Switzerland. The 7-time Formula One world champion has not been seen in public since suffering serious head injuries in December 2013 while on a skiing holiday in the French Alps.
The karting club currently has 550 members in it. They have all been offered compensation by RWE. However, club president Gehard Noack said, “what we need is a karting circuit, without one there won’t be a club anymore.”
What does this actually mean for the future of German motorsport? This track obviously has a lot of memories for the Schumacher family. It has also been the breeding ground for German talent like Sebastian Vettel. But unfortunately, things are not meant to be and the track will have to close down for good.