Vettel praying for Schumacher

Sebastian Vettel has revealed he is still praying for a miracle for friend and compatriot Michael Schumacher.

The seven-times Formula One champion remains in an artificially-induced coma since suffering serious head injuries in a skiing accident at the French resort of Meribel towards the end of December.

There is growing concern as to whether Schumacher will make a full recovery given the length of time the 45-year-old has remained in his current condition.

Speaking on the opening day of the first pre-season test in Jerez, reigning four-times champion Vettel said of his fellow German: "I have known him for a long time. I have been looking up to him all my life.

"I got to know him a little bit more when he made his comeback (with Mercedes in 2010). He became a friend.

"We didn't have an awful lot of contact, it was not like we were on the phone every day, but we spoke to each other regularly.

"At the beginning I'd heard about his accident, and you didn't think of it being that bad.

"But he's still in a coma and we still don't know what shape he will be in when he wakes up, which is horrible, especially for his family and close friends, not knowing what is going to happen.

"I'm still as shocked as everybody else, and I pray and hope the miracle will happen, he will come back and be the person he was before."