Michael Schumacher says he is already turning his focus towards the 2011 F1 season after a somewhat troubled start to his return to the sport.

The seven-time champion came out of retirement this season to join Mercedes but has endured a difficult return to date - with 34 points from the first seven races and no trips to the podium to date.

While the German has seen his form in improve in recent races - with fourth place finishes in both Spain and Turkey - the pace of both Red Bull and McLaren has made it difficult to challenge at the front of the field, with Schumacher admitting that he is already turning his focus to next year.

"When I started the season I was thinking about the championship - that was my aim and focus," he told the Press Association. "But then at one point you understand your package is where it is and from there on you have to do a certain programme and process, and that's what we are going through.

"Although the year is still long I don't think I'm really in a position to win the championship.

"It's more about building up and organising things for what happens from next year onwards, but you never know, it's still a long year with many points available."

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