Michael Schumacher's manager has played down speculation the 40-year-old might stumble at the fitness hurdle prior to making his sensational return to formula one later this month.

Michael Schumacher's manager has played down speculation the 40-year-old might stumble at the fitness hurdle prior to making his sensational return to formula one later this month.

The German's official spokeswoman this week slammed the brakes on the comeback euphoria by warning that the seven time world champion still needs to pass medical and fitness checks before his Valencia participation is confirmed.

Sabine Kehm told German television ZDF: "It is not quite certain yet that his neck will hold and the comeback can be started."

But according to the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung newspaper, Schumacher's manager Willi Weber is already well-advanced in preparations for Valencia, including arranging for memorabilia and merchandise that celebrates his return to F1 after a nearly three-year absence.

Weber told FAZ: "It is pure speculation to say that Michael will not drive in Valencia. We are making all preparations for the fact that he will be there."

Schumacher on Thursday completed a second consecutive day of go-kart testing at the Italian circuit in Lonato.

"Arms, upper body, shoulders, neck -- an excellent practice indeed," he told his official website michael-schumacher.de. "In the next days I will keep practicing at home."

 

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Manager says Schumacher return not in doubt