(QHA) - Former motor racing world champion Michael Schumacher is in a coma following a skiing accident in France, Sky News reports. The 44-year-old German suffered a "serious brain trauma with coma on his arrival, which required an immediate neurosurgical operation," according to the hospital treating Schumacher in the French city of Grenoble. He was airlifted off the mountain following the accident in the resort of Meribel, in the popular Three Valleys area. Schumacher, a seven-time world champion, first retired from Formula One in 2006. He has been hurt seriously once before, in a motorcycling accident in February 2009 when he suffered neck and spine injuries. Schumacher recovered sufficiently from those injuries to make a comeback to Formula One in 2010.