Under Florida’s sun, Mick Schumacher finally wants to score his first points in Formula 1. The son of the record world champion urgently needs to deliver arguments for a long-term future in the racing series.
With a broad grin, Mick Schumacher threw himself down a slide at the Miami Dolphins’ training camp. A few attempts at throwing the football, two more kicks between the goalposts – the Formula 1 driver clearly enjoyed this warm-up programme for the premiere in Florida. There was little sign before the US home game of his employer Haas that the 23-year-old is under more pressure than ever after four races without points at the start of the season. “He has to learn to drive at the front. Things are tighter in the midfield,” team boss Günther Steiner warned in the “Welt”.
Only Lafiti also has zero points
Apart from Williams driver Nicholas Latifi, Schumacher is the only regular driver who has not yet scored any points this year. While the pre-season in the uncompetitive Haas was expressly intended as an apprenticeship year for him, Schumacher now has to deliver results. But the results so far are sobering: eleventh in Bahrain, 13th in Australia, 17th in Imola, plus the horror accident and retirement in Saudi Arabia.
“We live and learn, we look ahead and try to do better next time,” Schumacher replied to the increasingly unpleasant questions. Especially the comparison with his new teammate Kevin Magnussen makes the son of record champion Michael Schumacher look bad right now. The Dane, who replaced the Russian Nikita Masepin only shortly before the start of the season, has already scored 15 championship points.
Magnussen (29) is also expected to use his experience as a driving instructor to help Schumacher turn things around. “It’s great to compare with him, he has a lot of experience. It’s already very different from last year. And I’m happy that it’s like that,” Schumacher affirmed in Miami.
In the sunny state of Florida, the young star simply doesn’t want to let his mood be spoiled. Schumacher has taken the USA firmly to his heart; his family has long owned a ranch in Texas. “My sister says that the sky seems bigger in the US, and that’s true in a way,” Schumacher said.
Recently, however, this sky darkened for Germany’s greatest hope for the future. The dream of the next Schumacher in the Ferrari cockpit, cherished by many fans, has been dented. The Scuderia recently extended the contract with Spaniard Carlos Sainz until the end of 2024, while world championship leader Charles Leclerc is tied down for just as long. And Ferrari trainee Schumacher must first collect arguments to secure his regular place in Formula 1 in the long term.
First world championship points at the 26th attempt?
“Nevertheless, I remain positive. The points will come,” Schumacher told “Sport Bild”. The stronger Ferrari engine and the retreaded Haas give him confidence. As a driver for a US team, Schumacher also enjoys the special affection of the public in Miami. The best prerequisites, actually, for the first World Championship points in the 26th attempt. “Once he has overcome this hurdle, it will be easier,” said team boss Steiner.