Mar.14 (GMM) Michael Schumacher has revealed he would not have returned to Formula One if not for the sport's strict testing ban.
Two years after his record seventh title, the famous German retired in 2006, but then came back with the new Mercedes GP venture in 2010 and is now deciding whether or not to extend his contract for 2013.
But as a multi-millionaire and 43-year-old father of two, he was asked by the German newspaper Bild-Zeitung why he was not content to simply "enjoy your family" in the wake of his unprecedented success.
"Because racing is my passion," he insisted, "and anyway it doesn't mean I have to stop enjoying my life with my family.
"When I came back again, one of the reasons (for the decision) was that Formula One is much less time-consuming as it was in my 'first career'.
"Then, we had testing after each race, now - during the season - there is not. I have plenty of time for my family," said Schumacher.
"Otherwise, clearly, there would have been no comeback," he admitted.
Formula One is much less time-consuming as it was in my 'first career'
So, Schumacher is now deciding whether or not to stay in 2013 and beyond.
Would he consider returning to Ferrari, to once again take on the challenge of pulling the famous Italian squad out of a crisis?
"Let's just say this," the German answered. "The probability that I will end my career with a team other than Mercedes is so exceedingly low that I don't need to even think about it."