Over two hundred fans made the trip to Grenoble to stage a vigil for Michael Schumacher, as the German spent his 45th birthday in hospital following last weekend's skiing accident.

Ferrari, which helped organise trips for fans wishing to mark the occasion, claimed that representation from Italian and French Scuderia Ferrari Clubs were joined at Grenoble University Hospital by others from Germany and Spain who had responded to the call and made their own way to the site in order to pay a special tribute to the seven-time F1 world champion.

A special Ferrari Heart was displayed in the hospital car park, held up by the hands of those present, but also metaphorically by the strength of the millions of fans from around the world who are willing Schumacher on in the hardest challenge of his life.

The seven-time F1 world champion should have been celebrating on Friday (3 January), but instead remains under constant observation as he fights to recover from the effects of a crash while skiing with his family on Sunday.

Schumacher remains in a 'stable but critical' condition according to his manager but, despite showing unexpected signs of improvement following a second operation on New Year's Day, is still 'not out of danger'. Reports claim that the German's helmet, which undoubtedly saved his life, was cracked in the impact with rocks that littered an off-piste route on his return to the resort of Meribel. Some reports claim that he had strayed off the usual run to help the daughter of a friend, who had fallen on her descent.

Doctors have said that further updates on Schumacher's condition are only likely if there is any significant change, while his manager has again asked for his privacy to be respected.

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