Ferrari test driver Luca Badoer to stand in for one race
11 August 2009

Michael Schumacher has cancelled his Formula One comeback as a result of a neck injury he suffered earlier this year in a motorcycle crash.

In a statement issued on his website, Schumacher said that he informed Ferrari last night he was not fit enough to race.

"Yesterday evening, I had to inform Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo and team principal Stefano Domenicali that unfortunately I'm not able to step in for Felipe," he said.

"I really tried everything to make that temporary comeback possible, however, much to my regret it didn't work out.

Autocar's F1 circuit guide

"Unfortunately we did not manage to get a grip on the pain in the neck which occurred after the private F1 day in Mugello, even if medically or therapeutically we tried everything possible."

"The consequences of the injuries caused by the bike accident in February, fractures in the area of head and neck, unfortunately have turned out to be still too severe.

"That is why my neck cannot stand the extreme stresses caused by F1 yet. These are the clear results of the examinations we did on the course of the past two weeks and the final examination on Monday afternoon.

Alan henry's F1 blogs

"As there were no improvements after the day in Mugello, I decided at short notice on Sunday to do that thorough examination on Monday.

"I am disappointed to the core. I am awfully sorry for the guys of Ferrari and for all the fans which crossed fingers for me.

"I can only repeat that I tried everything that was within my power. All I can do now is to keep my fingers crossed for the whole team for the coming races."

Ferrari has subsequently announced its test driver Luca Badoer will stand in for Massa for the next event at Valencia.

Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo said: "I am very unhappy that a problem means that Michael cannot return to racing.

"In the past few days, I could appreciate his great efforts and extraordinary motivation which had spread through the team and fans around the world. No doubt his return would have been good for Formula One and I am sure it would have seen him fighting for wins again.

"In the name of Ferrari and all the fans, I wish to thank him for the strong attachment he displayed for the team in these circumstances.

"In agreement with Stefano Domenicali, we have therefore decided to give Luca Badoer the chance to race for the Scuderia after he has put in so many years of hard work as a test driver."

The 38-year-old Italian has been a Ferrari test driver since 1998 and last raced in 1999, for Minardi.

See all the latest Ferrari reviews, news and video

Twitter - follow autocar.co.uk

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Volvo V90
    First Drive
    19 October 2017
    The Volvo V90 is a big estate ploughing its own furrow. We’re about to see if it is refreshing or misguided
  • Kia Stonic
    First Drive
    18 October 2017
    Handsome entrant into the bulging small crossover market has a strong engine and agile handling, but isn’t as comfortable or complete as rivals
  • Hyundai Kona
    First Drive
    18 October 2017
    Hyundai's funky-looking Kona crossover with a peppy three-cylinder engine makes all the right noises for the car to be a success in a crowded segment
  • Citroën C3 Aircross
    First Drive
    17 October 2017
    The Citroen C3 Aircross has got funky looks and a charming interior, but it's another small SUV, and another dynamic miss. Numb steering is just one thing keeping it from class best
  • Skoda-Karoq 2.0 TDI 4x4
    First Drive
    16 October 2017
    Diesel version of Skoda’s junior SUV is unobtrusive and undemanding, but we’d still go for the silkier petrol version of the Karoq