Schumacher to Decide on Future this Year

Five-time World Champion Michael Schumacher will decide later this year whether to retire at the end of the 2004 season.

Schumacher to Decide on Future this Year

Five-time World Champion Michael Schumacher will decide later this year whether to retire at the end of the 2004 season.

The 34-year-old Ferrari driver is contracted to the historic Italian team until the end of next year, but revealed he will decide whether to sign a new deal or retire from Formula One later this season.

"I will make up my mind about this step some time this year," Schumacher told Germany's Kicker sports magazine in an interview to be published on Wednesday. "I'm in the lucky position that the decision depends mainly on me.

"The day when I don't want to work hard on myself to be top in racing anymore will also be the day that I'd be better off giving up."

Schumacher, who equalled Juan Manuel Fangio's record of five world titles last year, made his debut with Jordan in 1991 and has wracked up a record 64 victories over the past 12 seasons in the sport.

The German driver made his debut with Ferrari in the 1996 season, and since then he has clinched three drivers' titles in a row.

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