Berlin - Formula One great Michael Schumacher is no longer in a coma and has
left a French hospital where he had been receiving treatment since a skiing
accident in December, his spokesperson said on Monday.
Schumacher left the hospital in Grenoble "to continue his long phase of
rehabilitation," Sabine Kehm said in a statement.
She did not say when he was released, where the seven-time F1 champion was
taken or give any further details of his condition, and her office refused to
elaborate on the statement.
Brigitte Polikar, a spokesperson for the Grenoble hospital, said Schumacher
left on Monday morning, accompanied by an unspecified number of people. She
would not give any further details.
Schumacher's family "would like to explicitly thank all his treating
doctors, nurses and therapists in Grenoble as well as the first aiders at the
place of the accident, who did an excellent job in those first months,"
Kehm's statement said.
"The family also wishes to thank all the people who have sent Michael
all the many good wishes. ... We are sure it helped him," it added.
"For the future we ask for understanding that his further rehabilitation
will take place away from the public eye," it added.
The 45-year-old German driver was hospitalised with severe head injuries
after his December 29 ski accident, which split his helmet as he crashed into
rocks on the slope at the Meribel ski resort in the French Alps.
Doctors in Grenoble put him into a coma to rest his brain and decrease
swelling, and they operated to remove blood clots, but some were too deeply
Little information has been released on Schumacher's condition over recent
months. Monday's statement was the first substantial update since Kehm said in
early April that Schumacher "shows moments of consciousness and
Schumacher earned universal acclaim for his uncommon and sometimes ruthless
driving talent, which led to a record 91 race wins. He retired from F1 racing
in 2012 after an unmatched seven world titles.
Schumacher, his wife and their two children live in Switzerland. His
accident happened on a family vacation as Schumacher was skiing with his