Page last updated at 11:01 GMT, Thursday, 31 July 2008 12:01 UK

Schumacher crash stuns car dealer

Michael Schumacher
Michael Schumacher was unhurt in the collision in Lydd on Sunday

A Kent car dealer who was sent flying when a van struck a barrier was shocked to discover the driver was the German ex-Formula 1 ace, Michael Schumacher.

Martin Kingham, 39, said he was closing the security gate at his premises in Lydd on Sunday afternoon when a Fiat van struck the end of it.

The barrier hit his leg "sending him spinning" on to the bonnet of a car.

Police called to the incident said they helped both men to swap details and no further action was needed.

Mr Kingham was unhurt, while only minor damage was caused to Schumacher's van in the collision outside Millfield Motors, just before 1600 BST.

'Penny dropped'

He recalled how the police officer called to the scene said: "That chap is claiming to be Michael Schumacher, and I said, 'You know what, he doesn't half look like him'.

"Then the penny suddenly dropped. When I phoned my business partner later and told him that you'll never guess who I've been run over by, he wouldn't believe me.

Martin Kingham explains what happened

"Obviously being a car salesman we do like a wind up but the difference with this story is that it is actually true.

"Michael's entourage turned up and he left."

A spokesman for the seven-time Formula 1 world champion confirmed the incident had taken place and that Schumacher had co-operated with police.

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