Michael Schumacher's friend and former boss Ross Brawn is hopeful that the F1 legend may yet recover from the traumatic brain injury he suffered during a ski accident in 2013.

The former Ferrari boss and current F1 chief – who is widely regarded as the "mastermind" behind Schumacher's world championships – offered hope to fans, insisting that his team believes progress could be made soon.

In an interview with BBC Radio 5 Live, Brawn said "we're all optimistic about finding solutions in the future".

"There'll be a time when things will move forward with Michael," Brawn said, just days after Schumacher's 50th birthday.

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"They are a terrific family, very well balanced, they're following their own pursuits as well as supporting Michael.

"We've seen Mick, his son, establishing himself in motor racing, and Gina Maria is quite involved in a form of equestrian, she's been very successful with that.

"Corinna, Michael's wife, that's helped her through such a tough time. They have never relented with their support for Michael and their belief there will be solutions ahead.

"It's very difficult, for the privacy that the family want, and I have to respect that. They [early visits to the hospital] were very moving in the early days."

Brawn also recently spoke about how the German racing legend used to demoralise his rivals.

"Some of what Michael did was about undermining the enemy and destroying their confidence," said Brawn.

"Michael would be on the rostrum with two guys wilting, barely able to stand up, and he'd be bouncing around and they would be looking at him thinking: 'God, what on earth is this creature we're competing with?'"

Schumacher has not been seen publicly for five years after the devastating brain injuries suffered during the ski accident in December 2013.

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The 50-year-old's wife, Corinna, issued a rare statement about his health on the eve of his birthday, saying the family are doing "everything humanly possible" to help the stricken F1 legend.

"We are very happy to celebrate Michael's 50th birthday tomorrow together with you and thank you from the bottom of our hears that we can do this together."