Michael Schumacher remained in a critical but stable condition in hospital on the eve of his 45th birthday following his skiing accident at the weekend.
The seven-time Formula One world champion spent a fourth night at the University Hospital of Grenoble, where he has been since the accident on Sunday.
No update was given on Schumacher’s condition by the hospital or his management on Thursday, which indicated that there had been no change.
There was a statement from his family, published on Schumacher’s official website, thanking fans for their support.
“Following Michael’s skiing accident, we would like to thank the people from all around the world who have expressed their sympathy and sent their best wishes for his recovery,” the statement said.
“They are giving us great support. We all know he is a fighter and will not give up. Thank you.”
Schumacher’s family has remained at his bedside since the weekend.
Schumacher remains in a medically-induced coma following the accident, in which he hit his head against rocks while skiing in Meribel.
There was genuine fears for his life on Sunday and Monday, and while the situation remains critical, doctors reported a slight improvement in his condition on Tuesday and the fact he has remained stable since offers encouragement.
Meanwhile, Schumacher’s former team Ferrari announced plans for a special event outside the hospital to mark the German’s 45th birthday on Friday and show their support for his recovery.
In a message on their official fan page on Facebook, Ferrari said: “In these difficult days and on the occasion of his birthday the Scuderia Ferrari Clubs want to show their support for Michael Schumacher, organising tomorrow a silent and respectful event all in red at the Grenoble University Hospital Center.”
Fans were encouraged to contact their local Ferrari fan club to find out more details.