Michael Schumacher says he is keen to try and secure a strong finish in the Belgian Grand Prix on the weekend in which he will celebrate the 20 anniversary of his debut in the sport.
The German made his first appearance on the F1 grid in the 1991 race after being called into the Jordan team to replace Bertrand Gachot and then secured his first F1 success at Spa the following season with Benetton.
Mercedes has said that its W02 should be better suited to the high-speed Spa circuit that the likes of Hungary with increased confidence for the weekend ahead and Schumacher said he was keen to try and celebrate 20 years in the sport with a strong result on track.
"The race in Spa will certainly have a special touch to it this time, as this is where I drove my first ever Formula One race 20 years ago. It's hard to believe that this was such a long time ago.
“A lot has changed in those 20 years, but one thing has not: the track is still sensational. I just love the great nature of the location and the resulting layout with all the ups and downs. To me, Spa remains my 'living room', because it has been the stage for so many things which have been remarkable for my sporting career. This is why this time I would like to specifically send a big thank you to all my fans for their loyalty and support, which I was happy to receive during those 20 years and also since my comeback.
“Talking about the sporting side prior to Spa, we are all returning from the summer break with fresh motivation and energy, and will try to set an exclamation mark at the Belgian Grand Prix."
Mercedes motorsport boss Norbert Haug praised Schumacher for reaching 20 years in the sport and said he was hopeful of a good weekend for the team as it seeks to cement fourth in the championship standings.
“It will be a special weekend for Michael, who will mark the twentieth anniversary of his Formula One debut this weekend, which is an outstanding and remarkable achievement,” he said. “The races at Spa have historically been full of surprises and the weather has mostly played a major role. The layout of the circuit should suit our current technical package a little bit better than was the case at the previous two races."