F1 commercial rights holder Bernie Ecclestone says he doesn't feel Felipe Massa will be seen in an F1 car again until at least next season.

Massa is continuing his recovery in hospital in Budapest following the accident, which left him with a fractured skull and led to medical teams carrying out emergency surgery over the course of the weekend.

Initially there were concerns about the Brazilian's future career although it has since emerged that Massa's condition isn't as bad as first feared.

However, however spoken to the hospital, Ecclestone said he didn't think Massa would be in a position to return to the grid this season with 2010 a more likely date for him to make a comeback.

"I spoke to the hospital and they're now very hopeful that it's certainly not as bad as they expected it would be," he told The Times. "It's difficult to say whether or not he's going to be in a position to compete this year. Next year I don't know, but I doubt we'll see him this year.

"One thing that's good is that they're very, very hopeful that the eye's not anywhere near as bad as they thought."

Ecclestone also said he doubted that seven-time champion Michael Schumacher would be brought in as a replacement, with the German having been away from the sport for too long.

"I doubt whether he will," he said. "That guy, you must remember, was super-fit when he was driving, and to get as fit as that again and be prepared to get back in a car without any testing would be asking too much."