Ferrari team leader, Michael Schumacher looks set to stay in F1 for at least one more year.

Schumacher's deal with the Scuderia expires at the end of this season and while there has not been any confirmation on what he will do in 2007, according to German newspaper, Welt am Sonntag, he looks almost certain to remain in the sport beyond his current deal, despite having already won the drivers' championship seven times to date.

"Michael does not know whether he will drive in 2007 or stop. However it is apparent he cannot imagine a life without driving," a 'trusted friend' was quoted as telling the 'paper. "He trains for four hours every day and is extremely fit. Michael wants to drive and needs to continue racing."

The report echoes recent comments by Schumacher's race engineer, Chris Dyer. Speaking prior to the Australian GP, Dyer said: "I see no sign of him retiring. But I have no idea really, as it is not something we talk about. We have a job to do this year and we will get on with that. I have no opinion myself.

"The critical thing is how he feels about it, how much he still enjoys racing and how much he wants to do it. I see no sign that he is enjoying it less, so I cannot see any reason to indicate that he is going to stop. I think he will make that decision himself and when he has we will know about it."

Schumacher has had a mixed start to the new season and while he was in contention and fighting for the win at the season opening Bahrain Grand Prix, the following two events in Malaysia and Australia, were less successful with him picking up just three more points following his sixth place finish at Sepang. To date he has scored 11 points and is joint fourth in the drivers' championship with Jenson Button, 17 behind current leader and reigning world champion, Fernando Alonso.

Schumacher is expected to make an official announcement on his future in F1 later this season, with most sources suggesting it will come at the Italian Grand Prix at Monza in September.

Until then, speculation and rumours will continue to abound...



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