Schumacher to stay with Ferrari as assistant to Todt

MONZA, Italy -- Seven-time Formula One champion Michael Schumacher, who retired from racing last week, will stay on at
Ferrari as an assistant to new chief executive Jean Todt.

"The basis of my future will be that of a super assistant to
Jean," Schumacher said Sunday at the Ferrari World Finals, the
racing team's traditional season-closer.

He did not elaborate on his new role, saying he needed to
reflect on what he might be able to offer Ferrari.

"At the moment, I don't have a definite answer," Schumacher
said. "I want to take myself away from the world of Formula One
for a few months to think about my life. Then I'll have a better
idea of what I can do for Ferrari."

Todt, who was appointed Ferrari chief executive on Wednesday
following a stint as team principal, praised Schumacher's

"We will look to make the most of Michael's knowledge for
sporting, technical and strategic choices," he said.

Schumacher walked out onto the track at Monza -- where he
recorded five of his 90 Formula One victories -- to bid farewell to
the thousands of fans who had gathered to see him.

After posing for photos and shaking hands with supporters,
Schumacher drove about 20 laps of the track, first in Ferrari's
2006 Formula One race car and in a two-seater Ferrari FXX, with
Todt in the passenger seat.

The 37-year-old German said he was looking forward to a new pace
of life.

"The last few years have been very intense, and everything has
always been prepared down to the most minute detail," he said.
"Now maybe the time has come for me to have a different kind of

A few days ago, Schumacher revealed he may even consider a return to

The seven-time world champion, who turns 38 in January, raced
what was thought to be his final Grand Prix at Brazil on Oct. 22.

But he told Swedish journalist Fredrik af Petersens, in an
interview published on www.autosport.com, that he would not rule out
coming back in the future.

"Why should I?" he told the journalist. "For now, in any case, I can only
answer in this way. Niki Lauda went back to racing in F1, Mika
Hakkinen races in DTM, but all this happened after some time.

The Associated Press and SportsTicker contributed to this report.