Michael Schumacher still believes that he can fight for the World Championship this year, despite his team failing to match pace-setters Red Bull Racing, Ferrari and McLaren so far.
With his Mercedes GP team set to introduce a major revamp of its car for the next race in Spain, Schumacher believes that the development push by his outfit can still lift him into contention for the title. When asked if he agreed with Fernando Alonso's recent suggestion that he was still a championship contender, Schumacher said: "Indeed, yes I do.
"If you take the points system and you see that like Fernando, he had a retirement in Malaysia [and] for whatever reason it can happen to all of us. I had mine in Malaysia and, at one point of the season, it will hit the guys fighting for the championship. So, if we have a quick enough development speed, there is no reason why we cannot fight for the championship.
"It is such a long season ahead of us, it is so early, and we know how quick the rate of development is. There is good potential to develop this car, so no reason to think this season is over for Nico [Rosberg] or myself."
Schumacher also insisted that he was not disappointed by his early season results, despite them failing to match the high expectations placed on him in the preseason.
"In terms of results, they were not as great as some people expected and even myself I would have loved to have better results, but the competition is high," he said. "It is natural to not have the same positive feedback in the media, but I know what I have been doing, I know what has been going on and I have no reason to be disappointed. I still feel very happy and if other people like it or not, that is their choice."