Williams boss says Mick Schumacher ‘definitely an option’, dismisses other German driver

Logan Sargeant and Mick Schumacher are understood to be battling for the remaining Williams seat.

Seemingly outgoing Haas driver Mick Schumacher is looking to be in a head-to-head fight with Formula 2 driver Logan Sargeant for Nicholas Latifi’s seat at Williams, as Williams boss Jost Capito revealed that the German “is an option” for 2023.

The 23-year-old is looking set to get the axe from Haas at the end of the year, who are appearing increasingly likely to sign Aston Martin reserve driver Nico Hulkenberg to partner Kevin Magnussen.

Haas boss Guenther Steiner has previously said that the young driver has a “50/50 chance” of retaining his seat and being offered a contract extension; however, recent reports suggest that Hulkenberg is the Americans preferred option.

All might not be lost for Schumacher, though, with Capito, a clear fan of the son of Michael Schumacher, believing he “deserves” to be on the grid.

Williams CEO Jost Capito in 2021.v1

READ: Mick Schumacher drives father’s Ferrari ahead of high-profile auction

Whilst the start of 2022 was disastrous for the German, following two heavy crashes, he has out-performed Magnussen in the second half of the year.

He was on track for a points finish at the Singapore Grand Prix last weekend as well, until he was hit by George Russell late on.

If he is replaced at Haas, then Williams is his only option to remain on the grid and is clearly something that could very well happen.

“Mick is an option, he also deserves to stay in Formula 1,” Capito told RTL.

Article continues below

“We’ll see if that happens, but he’s definitely an option for us.”

The winner of the second Williams seat is likely to be announced after the season has finished, with Sargeant needing to finish in the top six of the F2 Drivers’ Championship to earn enough points to make his superlicence eligible for an F1 seat.

The F2 season finale is typically also the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, meaning an announcement will probably be made in December.

However, if Sargeant does achieve a top six finish, something which is likely given he’s currently third, then it’s predicted that he will be awarded the seat.

The American driver is a key part of the Williams Academy, something which could give him an edge over Schumacher.

Given that he’s part of their academy, it would be incredibly odd if they don’t promote the F2 driver if he achieves the result he needs at the season finale.

Should he fail to finish in the top six, though, then Schumacher will all but certainly claim the seat.

Nyck de Vries, who sat in for Alex Albon at the Italian Grand Prix, is believed to no longer be an option, with Canal Plus reporting in Singapore that the Dutchman has signed a deal to race for AlphaTauri next season.

Capito admitted that a decision will be made “after the season”, with the side not being in a position to announce who will partner Albon quite yet.

“Most likely, that will be decided for us after the season,” revealed Capito.

“I think it should be the case shortly after Abu Dhabi or a week or two later.”

Whilst being the favourite to replace Schumacher at Haas, Hulkenberg was at one point a suggested option for the historic side, given the fact he drove for the team in 2010.

There appears to be no chance of a reunion happening in 2023 for the duo, with the team having had “no contact” with the 35-year-old.

“At the moment we have no contact with him,” Capito admitted.

The decision not to consider Hulkenberg or outgoing McLaren driver Daniel Ricciardo appears to be due to the side wanting a young driver to partner Albon, who the team deems as their “experienced driver”.

This means it is all but set to be a battle between Schumacher and Sargeant for Latifi’s seat at the 10th placed team, who will be looking for a considerably better 2023.

READ: Helmut Marko hits out at bitter Toto Wolff, fires scandalous accusation

“I absolutely see Alex Albon as an experienced driver,” added the Williams boss.

“He was with AlphaTauri, he was with Red Bull. You can then take a young driver for that. If you’re racing for the World Cup, you probably can’t afford it.

“In the situation that Williams is in, that we’re not fighting for the title but still have to work in advance, you can also rely on a young driver who you can also rely on in the long term, who you have under control yourself and who you don’t care about train another team.”