Schumacher signs on dotted line for sensational F1 return

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London, Dec. 23 (ANI): Michael Schumacher looks set to make his sensation F1 return after reportedly signing a one-year contract with Mercedes GP for a salary of about 6.25 million pounds for the 2010 season.

The Times quoted a German newspaper, as saying that Schumacher travelled to the Brackley, Northamptonshire, headquarters of the Mercedes team, on Tuesday to sign on the dotted line for a sensational return to the grid after three years on the sidelines.

However, Schumacher's official spokeswoman Sabine Kehm said the seven-time world champion was on a skiing holiday with his family at an undisclosed location. he was unsure whether he had taken time out to come to Britain to meet Ross Brawn, the team principal of Mercedes who helped guide Schumacher to world drivers' championships at Benetton and Ferrari.

But Kehm did say: "He was skiing, and he will be skiing again."

If reports are confirmed, they'll prove that the sport's most successful driver is not about money, as the salary quoted for Schumacher is modest by comparison with the top earners on the grid.

Lewis Hamilton, for example, is thought to be taking home a basic package from McLaren of around 15 million pounds a year.

With an estimated fortune of 500 million pounds, Schumacher, 40, hardly need worry about his retirement and his inner circle insists that his return to the cockpit is primarily motivated by his desire to race again.

As the comeback becomes more certain, so too are the predictions that the German will return in top form.

Niki Lauda, the Austrian former champion, said yesterday that he had no doubts about Schumacher's prospects.

"His level is that of a seven time world champion," said Lauda. "If Schumacher drives again, he will be immediately competitive, because he was the best - on another level." (ANI)

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