But former Haas pilot is only reserve driver at team where his legendary dad finished his career
2 hours ago
by Chris Chilton
Mick Schumacher has signed with the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 team almost exactly 10 years after his famous father, Michael, left the outfit.
Schumacher junior was left without a seat for 2023 when Haas announced in November that it was dropping him to sub in Nico Hulkenburg, but even this new deal doesn’t guarantee modestly-quick Mick any race action.
The 23-year old German has only signed on as Mercedes’ reserve driver and is unlikely to get any Sunday seat time unless Lewis Hamilton or George Russell are unable to race. He will however be actively involved in developing the team’s W14 car to get it ready for the 2023 season, will spend plenty of time strapped into the simulator, and will also attend every F1 race and be ready to jump in when required.
“I am thrilled to be part of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team as their reserve driver for 2023, and I am committed to give it my all to contribute to their performance in this very competitive and professional environment,” Schumacher said in a statement announced the same day that Ferrari confirmed it was severing ties with the driver. Schumacher had served as Ferrari’s reserve driver during 2022.
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Schumacher was 2018 Formula 3 European Champion and added the F2 title to his trophy haul on his second try before switching to the big league. He spent two years with Haas, starting 43 races, and scored his first points at the British Grand Prix this year, but he finished 16th in this year’s drivers’ table and hasn’t really wowed like his dad did.
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“Mick is a talented young driver and we’re delighted to have him join the Team,” said Mercedes Team Principal Toto Wolff. “He is a hard worker, has a calm and methodical approach and is still hungry to learn and improve as a driver. We also know that with two years of experience racing in Formula One under his belt, he will be ready to step into the car at short notice to replace either Lewis or George, should that need arise.”
Schumacher will be desperately hoping that happens, but will also be relieved to have secured a seat of any kind rather than be left out in the cold for a year. Next season is going to be an interesting one as Mercedes-AMG tries to bounce back from a 2022 F1 Constructors Championship defeat at the hands of arch rival Red Bull.