Schumacher says no to F1 comeback

Michael Schumacher on Saturday ruled out speculation he might re-double his efforts to be fit enough to replace Luca Badoer at Ferrari for forthcoming races. Badoer, in his first qualifying session since he also qualified dead last at Suzuka in 1999, was multiple seconds off the pace as he began substituting for the injured Felipe Massa at Valencia.

Schumacher has intended to be driving the number 3 F60, but called off his comeback due to ongoing injuries he sustained in a motorcycle testing crash earlier this year. But it hasn’t stopped speculation that the German might still attempt to return in the near future; if not at Spa next weekend then perhaps at Monza in mid September.

“For the moment, definitely not,” he told the German broadcaster RTL at Valencia. When asked which Ferrari driver will be at the wheel of Massa’s car at Spa, Schumacher added: “Luca, definitely.” Schumacher’s spokeswoman Sabine Kehm added: “A comeback at Monza is not a topic. Physically, that would be not at all possible.”

The seven time world champion also disappointed those who believe Schumacher is continuing his training in order to launch a full-time return to F1 next year. On Saturday, he told Italy’s Mediaset TV that he only agreed to fill in for the injured Massa, and that he remains not interested in coming back to the sport on a permanent basis.