Aug.11 (GMM) Jean Alesi does not subscribe to the theory that Michael Schumacher's three-years off the grid, and a slight neck injury, will necessarily prevent a winning return for the seven time world champion.
Frenchman Alesi, who was the German's predecessor at Ferrari, said the "few people" who are publicly doubting Schumacher, 40, are underestimating the skill of the winner of 91 grands prix.Some betting agencies are posting odds of up to 16-1 for a comeback win for Schumacher."Michael is the champion of champions," Alesi told French radio RMC. "In my opinion he is among the favourites for the next grand prix," 45-year-old Alesi added.Another former French F1 driver, Olivier Panis, added: "I am not surprised by his return. It is perhaps a bit risky but also courageous."I can understand how he is doing it for the challenge. Michael is a great champion and I am sure that he will be competitive."Anyway, he doesn't have anything to lose," Panis, who contested 158 grands prix until 2004, continued. "Nobody can take his titles away from him."