Mick Schumacher is one of a number of drivers at risk of not featuring on the 2023 Formula 1 grid, with the German driver’s contract at Haas set to expire at the end of the season.
The 23-year-old has had a very mixed second season at the American team, where he has improved dramatically since his two horrifically big, and extremely expensive, crashes at the Saudi Arabian and Monaco GPs.
Whilst the son of Michael Schumacher has improved as the season as gone on, it’s been reported that his relationship with the team remains an issue, with team principal Guenther Steiner having spoken negatively about the German in public on a number of occasions.
Steiner did recently praise Schumacher for a good performance at the Italian Grand Prix, where he finished P12.
Whilst he has improved, Steiner has admitted that there is a “50/50 chance” that the team retain the young driver for a third season, with the likes of Nico Hulkenberg, Antonio Giovinazzi and Daniel Ricciardo having been linked with the seat.
The American team certainly has a big decision to make over who will partner Kevin Magnussen next season; however, Steiner doesn’t feel in any rush to make a decision.
The team boss doesn’t want his side to feel the “pressure” of rushing the decision, with the Italian aware that his team hold a key “advantage” in having one of the stronger remaining seats.
“You put yourself under pressure and we don’t need that, we’re only playing against ourselves,” Steiner said to RTL.
“We don’t actually have any time pressure at all – everyone else has time pressure, but we don’t and that’s an advantage that we don’t take away from us.”
Aston Martin reserve and former Force India driver Hulkenberg is one of the names to have been linked with the seat, with the German being considered by Steiner due to bringing “experience with him”.
The Americans appear to be debating whether to go with an experienced line-up next season or not, with Schumacher being considerably younger than all of the rumoured candidates.
Steiner wants a driver who can get the team into the points instantly and help them take the next step towards the front of the midfield; however, Steiner knows that “you can’t calculate that mathematically”.
Should Schumacher not be chosen by Haas, then there are some options elsewhere.
According to Bild, though, Schumacher is “not a serious option for AlphaTauri so far”; however, he could be in with a chance of the vacant Alpine seat should Gasly not move to the Enstone-based team.
Esteban Ocon has been singing the praises of Schumacher in a bid to get the French side to sign the 2020 F2 World Champion, who he is very good friends with.
Williams is the other option, but it appears that this would only be viable should F2 driver Logan Sargeant fail to finish in the top six in the junior series’ Drivers’ Championship and if Nyck de Vries doesn’t go to AlphaTauri.
Sargeant needs to finish in the top six to gain enough points on his superlicence to be allowed to race in Formula 1, something he’s currently on target to do due to the American currently occupying third.