SEPTEMBER 2, 2004
Ralf blames insurers for delayed return
Ralf Schumacher has stated that he is fit and prepared to return to Formula One after fracturing his back ten weeks ago during the United States Grand Prix. Although the German has met with medical examiners and feels fit enough to get back in the car, he says it is insurers that have prevented him from racing at the Italian Grand Prix next week.
In a statement issued on his website, Ralf said, "I feel fit and have trained hard for many hours a day over the last weeks. On Monday I had a thorough medical exam. It included spinal stress tests. The diagnosis was great: optimal healing, excellent condition, no pains or ailments and the spine absolutely stable."
Schumacher went on to say the doctor gave him "a green light from a medical point of view to participate in Monza."
However, the Williams driver said insurers wanted a 12-week period of convalescence after the high-speed crash in the United States Grand Prix in Indianapolis on June 20.
"The insurers unfortunately vetoed my comeback plans," Schumacher said. "These 12 weeks would have been finished at the Monza weekend. That would not have been a problem. But racing is only possible after testing and that would be in the week before Monza."
"That was too early for the insurers, exactly one week too early. No exceptions, no release, no race."
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