sport

Schumi aims to end on high

Michael Schumacher has vowed to go out fighting as retirement beckons for a second time for the seven-time former Formula One world champion.

Schumacher is poised to finish on a sour note with the worst season of his 19 overall in F1, having accumulated just 43 points to leave him languishing in 15th at present in the drivers' standings.

On the back of his worst drought in F1 now stretching to six races, it is not what Schumacher signed up for when he agreed to step out of retirement at the end of 2009 and join Mercedes after a three-year hiatus.

For the 43-year-old, there was little improvement in qualifying on Saturday ahead of Sunday's potentially rain-hit Brazilian Grand Prix as he was only 14th - albeit rising one place due to Williams' Pastor Maldonado serving a penalty.

Although appreciating it was not good enough, nevertheless the old warrior has at least promised to give it his all.

"For obvious reasons I am not particularly happy about the qualifying session," Schumacher said.

"We might have compromised the car too much for the rain, which is expected for tomorrow, and was also forecast for qualifying.

"When the drops came down just before, it looked even more likely.

"Anyway, my starting position is now quite tricky, and I will have to see what we can make out of it tomorrow.

"Of course, coming from where I am does not make it easy, but I will definitely try to fight my way up the field."

Team principal Ross Brawn is also expecting one last hurrah from Schumacher, especially if the weather forecast proves correct.

"We know what a racer Michael is," Brawn said.

"With the difficult conditions predicted, we should see his talents come to the fore, and I'm optimistic we'll be in better shape for the race with the car that we have."