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INTERVIEW: Mick Schumacher determined to return to the F1 circuit and Mercedes’ time will help

‘What would you be if you weren’t a Formula 1 driver?’

It seems the very concept never even occurred to him. His green eyes began to swing wildly from side to side as if contemplating a daring double pass in Round 1.

He hesitated before blurting out: “Race somewhere else.. I guess?”

‘What if you weren’t into motorsport at all?’

Another pause, before he could only joke: “Race people in the street, or whatever..?”

When you’re the son of F1 legend Michael Schumacher, it’s understandable that following him into the cockpit of the fastest race cars on the planet has always felt like your destiny.

An equally understandable course of action might be to steer clear of the pressures and expectations that come with the weight of the Schumacher name and the incredible seven world championships associated with it.

But when racing is so ingrained in your DNA that the prospect of doing anything else can’t be understood, there’s only one path Mick would take.

However, after winning championships in both Formula 3 and Formula 2, his first foray to the pinnacle of motorsport with Haas F1 was something of a mixed bag.

He scored no points during his rookie season but consistently outperformed teammate Nikita Mazepin.

And while he scored 12 points in his second campaign, including an impressive P6 in Austria, new teammate Kevin Magnussen doubled that. A series of costly crashes also contributed to Haas’ decision to replace him with returning veteran Nico Hulkenberg for the 2023 season.

However, Schumacher does not go too far from the action and looks forward to making a significant contribution to Mercedes’ efforts this year.

“Since I raced the car last year, I have a much better understanding of the tire make and model,” the German driver pointed out.

“So that’s something that I can immediately feed into the simulator and draw that direct comparison.

“Hopefully during the year I can pick out some moments and help the drivers if I see something.”

His arrival at Mercedes at this time is also coincidental. Both he and the team are in the process of getting back on track.

In that regard, Mercedes and the culture they have inculcated over the past decade have brought complete domination in the turbo-hybrid era, which is perhaps exactly where Schumacher needs to be.

He recognizes how the team stands out for the way they operate and has great respect for the kind of mentality that drives their success.

“I think the professional side definitely stands out. The way they approach a race weekend but also little things like media events is amazing.

“You really see why they were able to win eight constructors championships in a row. It really shows the mentality and how they can keep trying and trying.”

At just 23 years old, Schumacher will gain invaluable experience during his challenging time at Haas and learn lessons that will surely help him move forward.

New opportunities will arise and Schumacher is determined to seize them wholeheartedly.

“My goal is to get back into the car as soon as possible and back on the grid.”

For someone who is so focused on their ambitions, it seems inevitable.

And, as is well established, there are literally nothing else he wants to do.

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