There have been conflicting reports from a number of sources regarding the possibility of Michael Schumacher joining Mercedes GP in 2010. Schumacher’s manager, Willi Weber, has dropped broad hints that negotiations are under way to bring the seven time world-champ out of retirement.
And Schumacher’s personal spokesperson, Sabine Kehm, has reiterated her opinion that Schumacher won’t make a comeback, although she later qualified this, as reported in The Times, by saying, “I still think it is unlikely, but you never know.”
While team boss Ross Brawn, at a press conference held to announce Nico Rosberg’s joining the team, declared categorically that Schumacher had no interest in making a comeback to drive for the team, both Norbert Haug (VP of the Mercedes motorsport division) and Nick Fry (Mercedes GP chief executive) were both more equivocal, refusing to state one way or the other whether Mercedes was actively pursuing the German ace.
Likewise, when Nico Rosberg was asked about the possiblity of having Schumacher as a team mate, he too dodged the question, by saying, “I don’t want to comment. Sorry.”
Now, the latest story to reach the media, as reported in The Daily Mirror, is that Mercedes have extended Schumacher an offer that would essentially allow him to create his own job description. He would be free to join Mercedes GP in any capacity he liked, whether it be as driver, consultant or manager.
The report failed to name a source for the story, and so it could be so much smoke and dust. On the other hand, it’s clear that something is delaying their announcement regarding Jesnon Button’s replacement, and it seems likely that they’re in a waiting mode. If they’d extended an offer to a driver such as Nick Heidfeld, Adrian Sutil or Heikki Kovalainen, it’s not very likely that they would have to wait for an answer. If they’d made an offer to Herr Schumacher, on the other hand…