Ferrari team principal, Mattia Binotto, has affirmed that he will do what he can to ensure Haas’ Mick Schumacher’s next career step is the right one for him.
The German endured a slow start to the 2022 season, suffering big crashes in Jeddah and Monaco, and he did not score points in any of the opening nine rounds of the year.
However, after a strong performance in Canada was abruptly ended by a reliability failure, Schumacher scored his first championship points at the British Grand Prix in July.
That was instantly followed by more points in Austria, but neither he nor Kevin Magnussen have managed a top 10 finish in the five races since – Haas’ joint-longest scoreless run of 2022.
Schumacher sat out the first practice session of the Italian Grand Prix last weekend, and was replaced by Ferrari test and reserve diver, Antonio Giovinazzi, who has been linked with the 23-year-old’s seat for next year.
The 2020 Formula 2 champion finished 20th and 19th in the second and third sessions, respectively, before qualifying last with Magnussen one place ahead.
Both drivers were lifted up three places by grid penalties for Yuki Tsunoda, Sir Lewis Hamilton and Carlos Sainz, but they never really made any progress towards the points.
Magnussen made a second stop right before the Safety Car was deployed late on, so he was caught out as Schumacher got a cheap stop, and the young German finished 12th ahead of 16th-placed Magnussen.
Binotto sympathised with the misfortune experienced last weekend by Schumacher, who is expected to cut his ties with Ferrari at the end of the season.
“It was another unfortunate weekend for Mick, he had problems with the car and couldn’t drive much before qualifying, which is hard to start from the back,” he told Sky Germany.
The Italian did not guarantee that Schumacher has done enough to earn a new contract with Haas for 2023.
“We still have a few races; then we’ll sit down with Haas and hopefully find the best decision for him and his future,” added Binotto.
Should Schumacher leave, Ferrari may decide to push Haas to put Giovinazzi in the care due to his links with the Scuderia, as well as the American team’s contractual relationship with their supplier.
Aston Martin reserve driver, Nico Hulkenberg, has also been linked with the seat that, as it stands, will become vacant at the end of the year.