Ralf Schumacher has not only ruled himself out of Formula One next year, but also appears to have narrowed his options elsewhere - despite insisting that racing remains his life.

Speaking in a New Year interview with Germany's Motorsport-Total.com, the former Toyota, Williams and Jordan pilot claimed that, while he was looking for alternative employment after ruling himself out of a seat with Force India in F1, there were certain areas of motorsport where he would not consider competing.

"Motoring was, until now, my life and will certainly remain a large part of my future," Schumacher insisted, "In what form, that remains to be seen. I have neither any offers or any concrete presentations, but that is okay as I am glad to have some peace and quiet for a while.

"I must say very honestly that I experienced beautiful years in F1, but also had many accidents. Whatever I do in motoring, whatever class that will be, still has to be one with comparable safety to F1. Anything else is not conceivable. I will not [race on] an oval, for well-known reasons, and I will also never do Le Mans or the Rallye Dakar."

Asked to confirm rumours that brother Michael had suggested he take a year out before trying to return to the top flight, Schumacher admitted that it was unlikely that he could afford to do that, effectively conceding that his F1 career was over.

"We did not speak about that," he insisted, "I have not spoken to Michael since Jerez. Theoretically, we must wait and see what is possible, but F1 waits for nothing and no-one."

Although enjoying the time off and no pressure to prepare for winter testing, Ralf is already planning to expand his repertoire.

"The winters were actually always quite quiet, but they have become quieter now," he admitted, "I spent some days with the family, but had to settle a couple of things too. I will start the year by adding another qualification to my pilot's licence. That is a hobby that interests me, and it is an expansion that will entitle me to pilot commercial flights in the future."

 

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