Michael Schumacher’s return to Formula One is expected to see ticket sales for the European Grand Prix rise by as much as 20 per cent, with millions more watching worldwide.
The seven-time world champion, who recorded an astonishing 91 wins as he dominated Formula One for the best part of a decade, will stand in for Ferrari ‘for as long as it takes’ for Felipe Massa to recover from the head injuries he sustained at the Hungarian Grand Prix.
“It is true that the Formula One chapter has long been closed to me,” said Schumacher on his official website, www.michael-schumacher.de. “The most important thing first: thank God, all news concerning Felipe is positive, and I wish him all the best again.
“This afternoon I met with team principal Stefano Domenicali and Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo and together we decided that I will take the place of Felipe. As the competitor I am, I also very much look forward to facing this challenge.”
And should he get the go-ahead to race in the European GP at Valencia, the Mirror claims he'll be earning '£3million a race - effectively £1m a day in Spain.'
But not everyone believes the 40-year-old has what it takes to return to Formula One.
"It's a gigantic mountain for even him to climb," the former 'Voice Of F1' Murray Walker told the BBC.
"I have no doubt that he will be physically fit and I don't doubt that he's mentally on top of it. It's just that he's bound to be rusty and he's got very little time to catch up."
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