Jean Todt says he is confident Michael Schumacher will recover from his skiing injuries.
The FIA president, who became famously close to the seven time world champion during their days together at Ferrari, is one of only a handful of people who have visited Schumacher in hospital since he fell into coma three weeks ago.
There has been speculation the great 45-year-old German may not recover from his brain injuries, but Frenchman Todt said he is confident he will see his close friend again.
"Michael is a fighter and I know well his energy, his courage and his perseverance," he is quoted in German-language news reports.
"I firmly believe this will make the difference at a time when fate is hesitating," Todt reportedly said in Munich at an awards ceremony.
"It is at this time that all who love him must believe in him," he added.