Auto Motor und Sport journalist, Tobi Gruner, believes that Mick Schumacher could end up losing the most once silly season shakes out.
Sebastian Vettel announced his retirement last week, bringing an end to a career that started with BMW Sauber in 2007.
The fact that he made the announcement was not such a surprise given that the four-time world champion is spending his time scrapping for the last point.
The surprise was the timing of it, but it has since become clear why he made his decision ahead of the Hungarian Grand Prix weekend.
The British team had given their driver the hurry-up, because they were in talks with Fernando Alonso in case the German opted to leave but, aware that the 41-year-old was mulling a contract extension with Alpine, they needed Vettel to make a decision.
Once he announced his departure, Vettel recommended to team owner Lawrence Stroll that he sign the 35-year-old’s good friend Schumacher.
The pair have known one another since Schumacher was very young due to Vettel’s friendship with his father and seven-time champion, Michael.
Mick got his debut in the pinnacle of motorsport last season, and his form has recently started to resemble that which took him to the Formula 2 title in 2020 after a tough start to the 2022 season.
Vettel asserted that the 23-year-old is the driver his current team should be looking at.
“I do have my opinion, I think very highly of Mick,” he said.
“I’m not entirely objective because I’m very close to him, but I do think he’s a great driver and is a learner.
“He keeps learning when others stall or stop making progress, he does have qualities but he’s also very young still, he doesn’t have a lot of experience.”
However, Alonso’s signature with Aston Martin was confirmed on Monday, and it is very unlikely that Alpine will try to sign the German due to their belief that they have a contractual agreement with Oscar Piastri, who disagrees.
Ferrari have a say in who drives for Haas due to their relationship with the American side, and recent performances would suggest Schumacher has earned another year.
If Ferrari and Haas do not feel this way, however, Gruner fears that the young German may end up being shepherded out.
“One loser of the Alonso deal is called Mick Schumacher,” said Gruner.
“The German had already had hopes for the cockpit at Aston Martin. Vettel himself brought his buddy into play as a suitable successor.
“If Haas doesn’t want to continue with the Ferrari junior at the end of the season, Schumi doesn’t have many options left.”
Schumacher, Nicholas Latifi, Yuki Tsunoda and Zhou Guanyu are all out of contract at the end of this season.