R. Schumacher likely to stay at Toyota – former boss

Thu, 26 April 2007, 07:18

Ralf Schumacher is likely to land a new contract to race with Toyota in 2008 and beyond, according to a former boss of the Japanese team.

Ex-head of research Norbert Kreyer was fired in late 2004, but he says struggling Schumacher will almost certainly not follow him through the door later in 2007 because it will mean team president John Howett loses face.

Kreyer said he advised his Toyota superiors in 2004 to sign Nick Heidfeld to drive for the team in 2005 and beyond.

“But Howett resisted with all of his effort,” he told Sport Bild.

“Instead, he wanted a big name, which played right into the hands of Ralf’s (former) manager Willi Weber.”

Kreyer said it is therefore “obvious” that Howett is still resisting his colleagues’ affection for Heidfeld and still supportive of Schumacher, who so far in 2007 has failed to match the pace of his lesser-paid teammate Jarno Trulli.

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