Schumacher out of coma, has left Grenoble hospital: Spokeswoman

A photo taken on February 3, 2010 shows Mercedes' German driver Michael Schumacher during a training session at the Ricardo Tormo racetrack in Cheste, near Valencia. Formula One champion Michael Schumacher is out of a coma and has left the Frenc
A photo taken on February 3, 2010 shows Mercedes' German driver Michael Schumacher during a training session at the Ricardo Tormo racetrack in Cheste, near Valencia. Formula One champion Michael Schumacher is out of a coma and has left the French hospital treating him since a devastating ski accident in December, his spokeswoman said Monday. -- PHOTO: AFP

LYON (AFP) - Formula One champion Michael Schumacher is out of a coma and has left the French hospital treating him since a devastating ski accident in December, his spokeswoman said Monday.

"Michael has left the CHU Grenoble (hospital) to continue his long phase of rehabilitation. He is not in a coma anymore," Sabine Kehm said in a statement.

"His family would like to explicitly thank all his treating doctors, nurses and therapists in Grenoble as well as the first aiders at the place of the accident, who did an excellent job in those first months.

"For the future we ask for understanding that his further rehabilitation will take place away from the public eye," she said, without giving further details about his condition or where the seven-time world champion was sent to.

Schumacher slammed his head on a rock while skiing in the French resort of Meribel in December and was put in a medically induced coma after undergoing brain surgery at the hospital in the Alpine city of Grenoble.

His family said at the end of January that drugs used to keep the 45-year-old in his deep sleep were being reduced to bring him back to consciousness, but little had filtered out about his condition since then.