Well, you kind of felt that it was the beginning of the end for Mick Schumacher over at Haas F1 late this season and when Ferrari had lost interest, that was pretty much the final straw.
The question then became more focused on Mick’s chances to even remain in F1 and Mercedes has stepped up with a nice offer to keep Mick in F1 as a reserve driver.
There is really no other option but hear me out here, this could be a very good timing thing for Mick. Mercedes will surely bounce back from the 2022 slump and if his timing is right, he could be in line for a ride should Lewis decide to hang his helmet up or if George gets tired of playing nursemaid to Lewis.
I could be wrong and Mick will have to prove himself beyond what he was able to accomplish at Haas but Toto could be a real important figure in his life in F1 at this point.
Mercedes press release:
The Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS F1 Team is delighted to confirm that Mick Schumacher will join the Team in the role of Reserve Driver for 2023.
Mick will play an important role in the ongoing development of the W14. He will conduct regular work in the simulator at Brackley throughout the year, as we fight back from a challenging 2022 season. This work will be harnessed trackside as Mick will also attend all Grands Prix in his new role, alongside carrying out marketing duties across the year.
Mick joins the Team having spent the last two years racing for the Haas F1 Team. He started 43 races and claimed his maiden points finish at the 2022 British Grand Prix with a strong drive to eighth place. He backed this up the following week to score a career-best result of sixth at the 2022 Austrian Grand Prix.
Prior to his graduation to F1, he enjoyed an impressive record in the junior categories. He was 2018 FIA Formula 3 European Champion, secured with a run of nine podium finishes, including five wins, from the final 11 races. After graduating to the FIA Formula 2 Championship, Mick sealed the 2020 title in his sophomore year with two victories and eight podiums.
The 23-year-old has impressed with his maturity, technical feedback and work ethic throughout his career; all qualities highly prized in a driver. He now joins the team where his father Michael raced between 2010 and 2012.
Mick Schumacher, Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS F1 Team Reserve Driver
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. I take this as a new start, and I am just excited and grateful to Toto and everybody involved for putting their trust in me. F1 is such a fascinating world, and you never stop learning, so I look forward to absorbing more knowledge and putting in all my efforts for the benefit of the Mercedes team.
Toto Wolff, Team Principal and CEO of Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS F1 Team
Mick is a talented young driver and we’re delighted to have him join the Team. He is a hard worker, has a calm and methodical approach and is still hungry to learn and improve as a driver. These are all important qualities, and we’re excited for him to help us develop the W14. 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.
Markus Schäfer, Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS F1 Team Non-Executive Chairman and CTO Mercedes-Benz AG
It’s great to have Mick on board. He has already demonstrated impressive talent on the track, and I look forward to watching him apply that to the development side, too. He has a great deal to offer in this important role. We have big plans for 2023 and Mick is integral to those as part of the Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS F1 family.