Schumacher’s manager guards against false reports

Leave a comment

We’re in a case of no news is no news with Michael Schumacher as he recovers from injuries sustained in his skiing accident on Sunday, and he remains in critical but stable condition in University Center Hospital in Grenoble, France.

That message was fully confirmed today by Schumacher’s manager, Sabine Kehm, who stressed once more that the only official updates will come from either Schumacher’s medical or management team. A series of press conferences has served as the best form of update since the accident, although one journalist attempted to gain access and dressed in disguise as a priest.

A camera fixed to Schumacher’s helmet was not also handed over voluntarily, Kehm said. Here’s her full statement from Saturday:

“Michael’s condition remains critical but stable. We would like to clearly stress that any information regarding Michael’s health not coming from the doctors treating him or from his management must be treated as invalid and pure speculation.”

“The family cares only for Michael’s health.”

“Michael’s helmet camera was voluntarily given to the investigating authorities by the family. That this should have been done against the wishes of the family is untrue.”

“We ask you to respect the continued privacy of the family.”

“In consultation with the doctors treating Michael, it is not expected that there will be any press conference before Monday.”

Also of note, former Formula One driver Robert Kubica has weighed in on the matter, considering he has been through a critical injury at a point in his career. He survived a near life-threatening rally accident in 2011.

“I was in a similar situation and I know media can play quite a hard game in a very difficult period for him, his family and close friends,” Kubica told Autosport.

Kubica, di Resta complete Williams F1 tests in Hungary

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Robert Kubica and Paul di Resta have both completed one-day tests for Williams in a 2014-spec Formula 1 car as part of the team’s evaluation for its 2018 line-up.

Williams is known to be considering a number of drivers to partner Lance Stroll at the team next year, including existing racer Felipe Massa.

Massa is thought to be going up against Kubica and di Resta for the 2018 drive, with the latter duo taking part in a private test at the Hungaroring in Budapest this week to aid the team’s evaluation.

After missing out on a 2018 Renault drive due to lingering questions about his physical condition six years after his rally accident, Kubica tested for Williams at Silverstone last week before getting back behind the wheel of the 2014 FW36 car in Hungary on Tuesday.

Kubica’s test was called “productive” by Williams, with the Pole handing duties over to Mercedes DTM racer di Resta on Wednesday.

Di Resta raced in F1 with Force India between 2010 and 2013 before returning to DTM, but made a surprise return at this year’s Hungarian Grand Prix with Williams when Massa was taken ill. Di Resta impressed on short notice, putting himself in contention for a full-time return to F1 in 2018.

Williams has one of the few remaining seats on offer in F1 for 2018, with Massa’s future known to be in question after a quiet campaign thus far.

The Brazilian had been due to retire from F1 at the end of last year, only for Williams to recall him after Valtteri Bottas’ late move up to Mercedes following Nico Rosberg’s surprise retirement.

Massa has made clear he would like to keep racing in F1 next year, but only if the deal is right and if Williams is determined to keep him.

While Massa, Kubica and di Resta appear to be the three leading contenders for the seat, Williams technical chief Paddy Lowe made clear in Japan there was a “large range” of drivers under consideration.

“You’ve probably seen a number of names that are floating around that we’re looking at, but honestly, the range is almost unlimited,” Lowe said.

“We will consider all ideas. We’re not in a super hurry to do so, and we’ll just make sure we land the best line-up we can.”