Mick Schumacher’s Mercedes running contingent on Lewis Hamilton and George Russell

Pre-season testing in Bahrain will provide the final chance for drivers to get used to their new cars, before the first Grand Prix of the year.

February 15th is a very exciting day on this year’s Formula 1 calendar, as it is the day that fans will get their first look at the hotly anticipated W14.

The W13 was filled with problems, being uncompetitive right from the start and harbouring a major porpoising problem as Mercedes struggled to get to grips with the new regulation changes.

Having limped to a third-place finish in the constructors’ championship, Mercedes have admitted that they got their design and development pathway for the W13 completely wrong.

Fans now eagerly await the unveiling of the W13, with many hoping that the Silver Arrows have learned from last year’s mistakes and can be a part of the title race once again this year.

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Another major change at Mercedes is that Nyck de Vries has been replaced by former Haas driver Mick Schumacher as the team’s test driver, following the Dutchman’s move to AlphaTauri.

While Schumacher will be itching to get behind the wheel on the W14 at some point this season, it unfortunately seems unlikely that he will be able to do so anytime soon.

After the W14 is launched, Mercedes will only have a 100km shakedown at Silverstone and the three days of pre-season testing in Bahrain to develop an understanding for their car.

With this testing time being limited, it seems highly likely that Lewis Hamilton and George Russell will share all of the track time, leaving Schumacher resigned to simulator work.

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It appears that the only way that Schumacher will be able to drive the W14 this season would be if either Russell or Hamilton are not able to partake in a Grand Prix, as they both need as much time in the car as possible before the season starts to get to grips with the W14.

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Schumacher will not even be able to fulfil the Silver Arrow’s young driver FP1 requirements over the course of the year, as his two seasons racing in F1 make him ineligible for these practice runs.

The long-term plan for Schumacher is for him to return to the grid either with Mercedes, or with another team should the opportunity not arise with the Silver Arrows.

The 23-year-old will be hoping that his work in the simulator and sporadic appearances on track will be enough to convince a team that he is the right man for their driver lineup.