Schumacher targeted for 2013 Gold Coast 600
V8 Supercars officials and Erebus Motorsport, which will run AMG-prepared Mercedes-Benz entries with Stone Brothers Racing in 2013, have targeted German Formula 1 great Michael Schumacher for next season's Gold Coast 600.
The seven-time world champion will retire from Formula 1 at the end of the 2012 season after struggling to make an impression in his comeback to the sport with the Mercedes F1 team, which could potentially free him up to compete in the international co-driver event on the Gold Coast.
According to a report in The Age newspaper, a senior V8 Supercars executive said, ''The chances of him competing at Surfers have only got better, not worse, with AMG on the grid next year. It will depend on whether he's available and how much he wants.''
Erebus Motorsport, which has strong ties with Mercedes-Benz via its performance arm, AMG, has declared its interest in approaching Schumacher and other Mercedes-connected drivers, including former F1 race-winners David Coulthard and Ralf Schumacher, for when it runs the Stone Brothers Racing operation and its three Mercedes entries.
Schumacher has been linked with a move to the German touring car series, the DTM, with Mercedes in 2013, alongside brother Ralf and Coulthard. The series' final round in 2012 clashes with next weekend's Gold Coast event.
''We haven't sounded him out, but I definitely raised an eyebrow when the news of his retirement came through,'' Erebus Motorsport chief executive Ryan Maddison told the newspaper.
''I've literally only discussed [international co-drivers for next year's GC600] with SBR this week. All avenues will be explored. We'd definitely be interested in Michael.''
Schumacher's presence would be a big boost to the event, which is coming under pressure from the budget-cutting Queensland government with 2013 the last event on its current contract.
Former Formula 1 drivers competing at the 2012 event include Nick Heidfeld, Mika Salo, Gianni Morbidelli, Vitantonio Liuzzi, Max Papis, Justin Wilson, Lucas di Grassi, Stephane Sarrazin, Sebastien Bourdais and David Brabham. The 2012 event will be held on October 19 to 21.
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