Todt: Schumacher not missing F1

Ferrari team boss Jean Todt says Michael Schumacher doesn't miss Formula One, but he will be able to drive the new car if he asks

German Schumacher retired from the sport at the end of last season after racing for 11 years at the Italian team, and will now start a new career with Ferrari in a consultancy role.

"I asked Michael if he was finding it difficult now. His reply was very clear: 'Absolutely not. If I miss driving I'll go karting'," said Todt at the launch of the new F2007 car at the team's Fiorano track.

"Joking apart, if Michael asks to drive the car we'll find a racing suit for him with pleasure."

Todt said Schumacher didn't have much of an input in the design of the new car, but he will now begin giving his contribution to the team in his new role.

"We spoke yesterday and today about many things of the past, the present and the future. This is obviously a new cycle: Michael is now in the factory looking at the new car but without the desire to sit in it because of his new role.

"In absolute terms, there's little of Schumacher's experience in this new car, since it has been developed with the current regulations and the current staff in mind.

"What we will take advantage of from Michael is more about now. His role will be important for the team. He's respected and listened to, and he will be a great help for me since I'm less involved in the day-to-day affairs of the sporting arm."

Todt left his general manager position at Ferrari last October to become the company's CEO, while also taking an interim role as managing director of the racing department.

The Frenchman also spoke of this year's racing drivers, with new signing Kimi Raikkonen being appointed to work with what was Schumacher's engineering team.

"Kimi's team will be the one that was Michael's last year, in the sense that Chris Dyer will be his race engineer, so I don't see modifications there.

"We haven't done much for Kimi yet, but we intend to do a lot for him, and we expect a lot from him as well. Life is about exchanging: one gives and the other receives, and the other way around.

"I haven't spoken about [Felipe] Massa because now he's sort of the old guy at the team, at least as far as drivers are concerned.

"We are very happy to have Kimi, Felipe, and the team we have. We expect a lot from every member of the team and each of us will have to give a lot in order to have the atmosphere, the will, and the results we want."

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