Back in the Day
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Schumacher shocks - on a MotoGP bike!
Former seven-times Formula One world champion Michael Schumacher made a dramatic return to the racetrack at Valencia on Monday - riding a MotoGP bike!
The German legend had previously made a cautious MotoGPdebut on a 990cc Ducatiduring a secret test at Mugello in October of 2005, but the now retired F1ace picked a much more public 'press and guest' day for his second appearance - and didn't disappoint.
Just one day after the season-ending Valencian Grand Prix, Schumacher took to the same twisty Spanish circuit on board Casey Stoner's 800cc Desmosedici, which won the 2007 MotoGP World Championship and finished second behind Honda's Dani Pedrosa in the season finale.
And, while 'Schumi' had been a distant 16 seconds a lap off MotoGP pace at Mugello 2005, he put in an incredible performance during his 800cc debut at Valencia - charging around the Spanish track in a best lap time just five seconds behind Pedrosa's race record of 1min 32.748secs!
Schumacher's 1min 37.9secs also put the former Ferraridriver three seconds a lap from the back of the MotoGP field. Michael was 'coached' by former 500GP star Randy Mamola during his extended session, which lasted for most of the afternoon.
Also sampling 2007 MotoGP power at Valencia on Monday was another F1 legend, Gerhard Berger, together with former 500cc world champions Wayne Gardner, Kevin Schwantz and Alex Criville, reigning double AMA Superbike champion Ben Spies, BSBstars Michael Rutter and Tom Sykes, plus Trial riders Toni Bou and Laia Sanz.
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