Sebine Kehn said Michael Schumacher is showing signs of
Sebine Kehn said Michael Schumacher is showing signs of "encouragement" in his ski crash comaReuters

Michael Schumacher is showing signs which give his family "encouragement" in hopes for his recovery, revealed the racing legend's manager.

In a comment which appeared to dismiss grave reports about his prospects for recovery, Sabine Kehm told reporters: "I can only say again: There are signs that give us encouragement."

The news represents a glimmer of hope for fans of of the F1 legend who has lain in a coma since suffering a catastrophic ski crash in the French Alps, late last year.

Misleading reports in a glossy magazine in Germany this week this week implied the 46-year-old was 'awake' from his coma at Grenoble University Hospital.

Die Aktuelle splashed the story on its front page and was swamped with criticism by angry fans of the racer.

Efforts are continuing by medical experts to lift Schumacher from the coma in which he has lain to give his brain the chance to heal.

Kehm was the person who provided the last positive news about Schumacher when she said last month that he was showing "small signs" of progress.

Since then, a family friend has claimed wife Corinna Schumacher is "in denial" about her husband's hopes, saying: "Is there a sense of denial at play among them? I would say yes."

Staff treating the former Ferrari driver have been criticised for allegedly making his condition worse by the former top doctor in Formula One.

Writing on his blog, Gary Hartstein: "I think that serious lapses in judgment were evident during Michael's initial management [which] almost certainly did worsen the outcome in Michael's case."

Hards was gloomy about hopes for Schumacher's recovery, saying: "Less and less likely that Michael will emerge to any significant extent."

Former Ferrari co-driver Felipe Massa recently revealed he is praying daily for the stricken German.