Ferrari have confirmed that Mick Schumacher will be leaving the Ferrari Driver Academy at the end of this season.
The split puts Schumacher’s Haas contract in jeopardy, and Antonio Giovinazzi, who continues to have Ferrari’s backing, looks set to replace him.
23-year-old Schumacher joined the FDA at the start of 2019 as he was about to contest his first season in Formula 2.
He had won the Formula 3 championship the year previous, and finished an impressive fifth at the infamous Macau Grand Prix.
As with many FDA drivers on the final rung of the developmental ladder, Schumacher joined the Prema team in 2019, but finished 12th in the championship after scoring points in eight feature races.
He completely turned this round in the COVID-affected 2020 though, scoring points 20 times, winning two races and ending on the podium on a further eight times.
The resulting championship success earned him a spot at Haas in 2021 but, in an underperforming car, neither he nor fellow rookie Nikita Mazepin managed points.
The Russian was replaced this season by Kevin Magnussen amid his country’s continued invasion of Ukraine, and the Dane has out-qualified Schumacher 11 times this year.
He has been in the points four times and, after struggling for form and suffering big crashes in Jeddah and Monaco, Schumacher eventually scored his first points by finishing eighth in Silverstone.
That was immediately followed by a P6 in Spielberg, but Haas have not scored since the Austrian Grand Prix.
Ferrari’s relationship with Haas will likely mean they will want an FDA driver in the car next season and, should that be the case, the German will be searching for another drive.
Giovinazzi would be the more obvious choice having driven for Alfa Romeo previously, but former Formula 2 driver Robert Shwartzman is also an option.
Formula 3 drivers, Arthur Leclerc and Oliver Bearman, have not quite developed enough yet, while external drivers such as Daniel Ricciardo and Nico Hulkenberg have also been mentioned.
Were the Scuderia to allow Haas to make their own decision on their driver for next year, Schumacher is still very much a possibility as he tries to agree a contract for next year.
Seats at Alpine, AlphaTauri and Alfa Romeo are currently available, but Yuki Tsunoda and Zhou Guanyu are both expected to sign new contracts with the latter two.
Alpine are reportedly trying to get the other AlphaTauri driver, Pierre Gasly, on board though, potentially presenting another opportunity with the Italian side, unless Schumacher is able to agree a deal with the Enstone-based team – if he wants it.