Finally, it has been officially announced that Michael Schumacher will make a comeback to Formula One with Mercedes GP. A strong rumour first broke early this morning stating Michael had signed a deal to drive with the Silver Arrows and this has just been confirmed on the Brawn GP website.
Rumours first began about a month ago, after it was revealed that Schumacher was seen in discussions with Brawn and Mercedes officials at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. Since then it seems anyone who has anything to do with F1 has piped up to have their say on Schumi’s return.
The move reunites Schumacher and Ross Brawn, a combination that has won seven world championships (two with Benetton, five with Ferrari). In the statement provided via the Brawn website, here is what the two men had to say:
Michael Schumacher: “MERCEDES GP PETRONAS represents a new challenge for me both in a sporting and a personal context. It is a new chapter in my racing career and I am really looking forward to working with my old friend Ross Brawn and my companions from my days with the Mercedes Junior Programme. I am convinced that together we will be involved in the fight for the Formula 1 World Championship next year and I am already looking forward to getting back onto the race track. For me, this partnership closes the circle. Mercedes supported me for so many years when I began my Formula 1 career and now I can hopefully give something back to the brand with the star.”
Ross Brawn: “I am delighted that we can confirm today that Michael will make his much-anticipated return to Formula One next year and drive for our MERCEDES GP PETRONAS team. As seven-time World Champion, Michael’s outstanding record in Formula One speaks for itself and I am looking forward to working with him again. With the completion of our driver line-up, I believe that we now have the most exciting partnership in Formula One with Michael and Nico, who provide the perfect mix of talent, experience, speed and youth. We can now turn our full attention to the preparations for the new season and everyone at MERCEDES GP PETRONAS is extremely excited about the challenge ahead. With the investment and support in our team provided by Daimler, Aabar and our new title partner Petronas, and with two such exciting drivers, we have all of the building blocks in place to have another successful season in 2010.”
A brief interview with Schumacher, filmed after his comeback was confirmed, can be seen on the BBC website.
Now, the wait begins for 1 February 2010, which is the first pre-season testing date. Schumacher says he expects to be fighting for the title, so all eyes will be eagerly awaiting for our first chance to see how Michael fares in this new era of F1.
[Source: Brawn GP]