They may both be racing in front of their home fans this weekend, and will likely do so from opposite ends of the F1 grid, but Timo Glock and Michael Schumacher both claim that they have reason to look forward.

Glock has endured a year-and-a-half of struggle with the tiny Virgin Racing team but appears more optimistic than ever following the arrival of Russian sportscar manufacturer Marussia as a partner and the recent reshuffle that saw the team take design matters into its own hands after admitting that the CFD-only approach favoured under Nick Wirth's leadership had not worked out. The recently-announced technical tie-up with frontrunner McLaren has also bolstered the confidence of a driver whose commitment to the team appeared to waver over the winter.

The former Toyota driver has a best finish of 14th, achieved last season, with Virgin, and has only reached the heights of 15th in 2011, but insists that the team is doing better than it could expect with the car it has, and anticipates a big step forward for next year.

"To be honest, on track, in terms of the performance of the car, I think we are not where we want to be," Glock said with some understatement, "but, in terms of changes for the future, I am happy.

"The commitment the team made and the announcement of the partnership with McLaren is a positive sign for the future. At the moment, operating on track, we are getting the maximum out of our package - more than 100 per cent sometimes - and it is a bit unfortunate that people don't see it that we are doing a good job at the back, but that's how it is. We have to make the best for next year.

"It is difficult to say [how soon there will be an upturn in form], as it depends on how quickly we can really start in terms of looking into this year's car. If we find quick improvement, I think we can manage to bring an update at the end of the year, but it is too early to say. I just hope we can do a proper job in terms of the development for the 2012 year, and if we have something for the 2011 year it would be great."

Schumacher, meanwhile, has failed to live up to the results that marked him out as the most successful driver in F1 history as the Mercedes team struggles to regain the form it showed under the Brawn banner, but is also buoyed by recent comments from Brackley.

"Certainly, we very much look forward to this weekend," he said when asked about the latest developments being brought to the WO2, "Listening to our guys in terms of the upgrade and where we could be, coming back to the rules as they exist right now, it will be interesting to find out what does that mean to the individual teams and where that is going to move us. So [there are] lots of things to look forward to and it is going to be an exciting weekend."

Despite the optimism, however, the seven-time world champion still maintains that the top step of the podium is a little too far away to be contemplated, even on home soil.

"I don't think we are in a position yet to talk about winning races," he conceded, "We are on the way, [and] we steadily improve although maybe results don't show it. But, if I see in terms of the organisation how we equip ourselves, how we move forward, what's the actions for the future, I am very optimistic to be quite honest.

"It wasn't initially a long-term project for me when I signed up but, after a while, I understood it is going to be and there is nothing that you can rush through. You have to progressively step up and that's what we are doing."

The veteran is also looking forward to racing in front of his home fans for the second time since coming out of retirement to lead Mercedes' works team in 2010.

"[I'm] hearing that we have almost sold out the N?rburgring weekend - ticket sales are going very well," Schumacher noted, "Coming here as the German national team, Mercedes and us two drivers [with team-mate Nico Rosberg], it is going to be a very special weekend. I have lots of good memories from this place and, with the recent updates, we hope to be able to improve our game and give something to our fans here."


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