Official: Michael Schumacher to return for Ferrari in the European Grand Prix

Michael Schumacher will drive Felipe Massa's Ferrari in Valencia

Michael Schumacher will drive Felipe Massa's Ferrari in Valencia

We had only just begun talking about who might replace Felipe Massa at Ferrari and now it has been confirmed:

Michael Schumacher will return to Formula 1 in the European Grand Prix driving alongside Kimi Raikkonen.

Schumacher said on his official website:

I was meeting this afternoon with Stefano Domenicali and Luca di Montezemolo and together we decided that I will prepare myself to take the place of Felipe.

Though it is true that the chapter Formula 1 has been closed for me since long and completely, it is also true that for loyalty reasons to the team I cannot ignore that unfortunate situation. But as the competitor I am I also very much look forward to facing this challenge.

Schumacher will be racing the F60 – a car he has never driven – at the Circuito Urbano Valencia – a track he hasn’t raced on before.

Last year’s European Grand Prix was derided as a boring procession. I fancy we might have something rather more interesting to talk about in three-and-a-half weeks’ time.

Saddened though we all have been by Massa’s crash – and relieved at his continued recuperation – it will be a thrill to see Schumacher up against the likes of Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel.

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317 comments on Official: Michael Schumacher to return for Ferrari in the European Grand Prix

  1. Brian said on 30th July 2009, 2:40

    Keith should have a count down clock on the site!!! lol, Hee hee hee.

  2. Prisoner Monkeys said on 30th July 2009, 2:57

    Well, Schumacher’s inexperience with the F60 and Valencia may just give the race something interesting, unlike last year. That, and the emergence of McLaren and Ferrari as forces to be reckoned with will make things interesting for Jenson Button and the Red Bulls.

    It’s actually kind of an obvious choice, really. Badoer’s getting on in his years and hasn’t raced in a decade, and when was the last time Marc Gene had a race seat? It’s also better than some of the ridiculous suggestions I’ve heard elsewhere on the internet … I mean, Sebastien Bourdais? What could he do in three or four races with Ferrari that he couldn’t do in eighteen months in a Toro Rosso? Likewise Nelson Piquet …

  3. The Limit said on 30th July 2009, 3:28

    Yes, that was in 1994 at Adelaide. Ironically the same grands prix in which Michael Schumacher wrapped up his first championship, at the expense of Damon Hill and a buckled Williams suspension.
    I usually blast Ferrari at every opportunity I get but on this decision I have to say has surprised me, and pleased me in equal measure. It has certainly added a much needed layer of gloss to the championship, and will be a great way for the post 2006 generation to show their true worth.
    The most telling thing about Schumacher’s career is that 1994 Adelaide was a turning point. From that
    championship win on, he was always the driver everyone wanted to beat. The highwater mark if you will.
    A driver wasn’t ‘somebody’ unless he had taken Michael on and beaten him. In twelve years, only a select few
    achieved this, and the majority left the sport long
    before the German ever did.
    Since his departure, the championship has been without a truly dominant driver in the way Michael was. We all expected Raikkonen and Alonso to fill the shoes of the maestro, but instead they were joined by Hamilton, Massa and Vettel. The title nowadays is far more diluted in terms of title contenders, far less a one horse race to the chequered flag.
    Despite all of these new challengers, I very much doubt Michael Schumacher will turn up in Valencia just to make up the numbers and put more dough in Bernie’s pockets.
    I always felt that Schumacher was forced out of Ferrari in 2006, to make way for Kimi Raikkonen. He will, in many ways, enjoy the challenge of taking on Raikkonen in the sister Ferrari, would could prove to be the end of the Finnish driver’s Maranello adventure.
    How fitting it would be, to play a massive part, in unseating the driver who’s hiring forced your early
    retirement from a team and sport you dominated for years.
    Already, I can hear the theme from the movie Rocky playing in the back of my mind. This is unbelievable, yet wonderfull.

    • mp4-19b said on 30th July 2009, 4:21

      its a golden opportunity for all of us to see schoemaker make a fool of himself. hehehe. people are comparing this to the mansell comeback in 94, but people are forgetting the fact that mansell is a great racer, unlike shoe who’s a cheat.

  4. jess said on 30th July 2009, 3:42

    I thought no way but after a review I can see why. MS will do it for loyality and will move aside when FM is ready to take over. That is a lot different than someone who will want to have a full ride.

  5. hippo said on 30th July 2009, 3:52

    Sweet, let’s see a host of “rule changes” and controversy. Schumacher led F1 in dirty play and it was “allowed”. New kid on the block, Hamilton, same moves, penalty. Let’s see how far we regress!! in the name of “thats racing”

  6. The Limit said on 30th July 2009, 5:15

    This is, in many ways, Ferrari trying to bring back their glory days they experienced with Schumacher. The relationship has, for the most part, not worked with Kimi Raikkonen. All the talk of Alonso joining compounds my point that, deep down, Ferrari now realise that they made a mistake choosing Raikkonen.
    Before all the Finnish bloggers go to lynch me, I am in no way saying Kimi is a bad driver, certainly not. Its was he does outside of the car compared to Michael, which has rankled the Italians.
    Kimi will always be Kimi, but his attitude only ever works aslong as it brings success. For the last one and a half seasons, he has failed to make much of an impact.
    For this Ferrari only have themselves to blame. Replacing Schumacher was always going to be an impossible task, for them and for Raikkonen, as his never ending pressence casts a long shadow.

  7. Freeman said on 30th July 2009, 5:23

    As much as I hated Schumi’s previous cheating ways, I don’t think he’ll resort to those tactics this time around.

    He doesn’t have that much pressure as many assume. If he gets outperformed, it’s normal since he hasn’t driven the F60. If he gets on the pace, we’re all amazed.

    His image is too valuable now to be destroyed by cheating stunts. Now that he’s older, and hopefully wiser, I’m sure he’ll play by the book this time. I just hope he’ll go out and enjoy himself, and put on a great show for us fans.

    (I’d never thought in a million years I’d one day be supporting his comeback, F1 is so strange and fascinating at the same time!)

  8. What would you think the reaction of the Schummi haters if he got a win or two in the remaining races of 2009? that would be great. losers!!!

  9. xrdavo said on 30th July 2009, 6:41

    Schumi is great at getting a car sorted and motivating the team. I’m sure will see the F60 come back up the order in this next half of the season.

  10. Ronman said on 30th July 2009, 6:45

    HA hA HA,,,, that was a dream for many, to have Schumi back against Hamilton and Raikko.
    I just cant imagine the Media Frenzi in a few weeks… F1 is back as it used to be????

  11. mp4-19b said on 30th July 2009, 7:01

    hope he doesn’t kill himself during the race.

  12. mp4-19b said on 30th July 2009, 7:17

    anyone wanna bet on how many times schummy will spin at valencia??

    • Maksutov said on 30th July 2009, 8:32

      I bet your head is now spinning from so much hate..

      We will just have to wait and see, dont forget the guy has not raced for a long time and very limited testing time.

      I think it is a bad idea to put himself in this position given the circumstances. But I do not understand your illogical schumacher hate comments.

      He has, of course, done number of bad things that none of his fans are proud of, but to think that he cheated his way to every win and to his success of 7 world championships specially in different cars and teams and against different team mates, is totally nonsense and childish and illogical.

      If he does well in that he finishes top 10, in any of the races (which is equally as good as what Massa and Kimi have done all year), or if he finishes anywhere 2 places close to his team mate Kimi, it wont look good for you…

      I believe depending on how many races he does, he will need at least 2 races to get the hang of the car

  13. Ronman said on 30th July 2009, 7:50

    Funny how so many are crucifying Schumi before he even gets in the seat. we should all remember that this guy was an exceptional athlete. His experience and drive, makes him still relevant today, he was racing bike just weeks ago, and that needs fitness, coordination yada yada yada as well… so don’t write the guy off.

    i think it will make for a very interesting race, especially if Alonso makes it…. lets wait and see how the F1 Masters will pan out

  14. Unlike some, I don’t think that Schuey will have lost much of his edge at all, if any. I am really looking forward to seeing him go head to head with Hamilton – many’s the time I have dreamed about seeing that ! Bring it on, I say !

  15. DGR-F1 said on 30th July 2009, 8:16

    To echo old MP4-19b at the top of the article, lets not get carried away just yet because a 40 year old ex-world champion is going to jump into the empty Ferrari seat ahead of either of the team’s official third drivers. Is this really loyalty or the work of Willi Webber?
    1. He hasn’t driven the F60 ever.
    2. He hasn’t driven an F1 car since last year
    3. He is suffering from injuries since the last time he fell off a motorbike
    4. He only has Friday practice to learn the car and the track.
    OK, so he may well be a Superman, but are Ferrari asking too much of him, and surely as a replacement driver, won’t he have to be an effective No 2 for Kimi?
    I’m sure we won’t get this much furore over a return by Mansell, Hill or Prost……

    • Maksutov said on 30th July 2009, 8:40

      Overall from many comments posted here, I disagree with mp4-19b hate comments.

      However I feel that Mark Gene would have been better choice given the circumstances, specially those as you described.

      But again M Schumacher is a person who is driven by challenges and for him to take on this challenge says really lots about the man. And I am sure he will do great, though, as I said above depending on the number of races, he would need at least two races to get the hang of the car, even if he “is” so to say a superman.

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