Motorsport fans can bid for Formula One legend Ralf Schumacher’s racing suit thanks to a shock charity shop donation from a mystery donor.
The red overalls, worn by the six-times Grand prix winner when he was driving for Williams in 1999, turned up in a charity bag at Kenilworth’s Scope shop – much to the amazement of shop manager Amanda Tucker.
It will now be sold to raise money for the national disability charity by Derbyshire’s Hansons Auctioneers on November 23 and carries an estimate of £2,000-£3,000.
Charles Hanson, owner of Hansons Auctioneers, said: “What an amazing racing red find. There are motor racing fans throughout the world who would love to own this exceptional piece of sporting memorabilia. It must be one of the best charity bag donations ever.
“What I particularly love about it is that it has Schumacher’s name written in pen on the name label – just like schooldays when our names were written on our sports kits to stop them going astray. This suit has gone astray but it couldn’t have landed in a better place. I hope Hansons can help Scope raise lots of money.”
The racing suit has been verified by Williams. It’s understood Ralf wore the suit in the French Grand Prix at Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours, near Magny-Cours in 1999. His older brother Michael Schumacher won the race. They are the only siblings to win Formula One races.
A spokesperson for Scope said: “After the initial surprise, our sleuth shop manager Amanda sent images to the Williams team. They established that the suit had been worn by Schumacher in the 1999 season.”
Jonathan Williams, MD, Williams Heritage, said: “The Williams F1 logo is in place of the usual Winfield logo, which indicates this overall was for races where tobacco advertising was prohibited.
“The white section on the lower torso is without a logo here. It would usually have been occupied by the Veltins beer logo. Only France during this time prohibited both alcohol and tobacco advertising, so these overalls are French Grand Prix and testing specification.”
Amanda Tucker said: “I had to do a double take when I first saw the suit coming out of the bag. Donations like this don’t come into the shop every day and we are truly thankful to our kind mystery donor. I felt like we’d passed the chequered flag.
“Donations are the lifeline of charity shops and this should fetch a swift price when we put it into auction. The funds raised will help Scope support the 13.9 million disabled people and their families in the country.”
The Ralf Schumacher racing suit will be sold on November 23 at Hansons Auctioneers, Heage Lane, Etwall, Derbyshire. Bid in advance by emailing [email protected], book a telephone line to bid by calling 01283 733988 or bid live by registering with www.the-saleroom.com. For more information about the item, email [email protected].