MICK SCHUMACHER has spoken about his pride at bringing back the famous surname to Formula One.
The 22-year-old is the son of seven time world champion Michael Schumacher and the nephew of former F1 driver, Ralf.
Mick Schumacher is about to follow in his icon father Michael’s footstepsCredit: PA
The 22-year-old is the son of seven time world championCredit: Splash
He is frequently quizzed about the weighty pressure his surname brings – yet he is remarkably cool about dealing with it as he prepares to make his F1 debut at the same age his father did.
Ahead of this weekend’s race, he spoke with a boyish charm about receiving his first F1 paddock pass, as the nostalgia came rushing back in waves.
He said: “It is motivation and pride. I am happy to be here… I am happy to have brought back the Schumacher name into F1.
“I have done it with championships on my back so we have proven I am able to drive a race car. So I don’t feel a blink of pressure from it.
“It’s an amazing feeling being with the team and knowing this is it and I’m getting close to my first race in F1.
“I got my pass – you know, the proper red F1 pass – and I was like, ‘Woah!’ I remember seeing my dad having one and I always wanted one, but obviously I didn’t get one.
“I have one now and it’s amazing and I am really looking forward to it.”
Schumacher will make his debut for the Haas team.
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Having won the Formula 2 series last year, he was offered his chance to step up to F1 as the rules prevent the champion from staying in F2.
He has been given his opportunity by the Banbury-based team off the back of the fact he is part of the Ferrari Drivers Academy.
Haas are Ferrari’s customers hence it makes sense for them to take the Italian team’s best rookie, while the dad of his teammate and fellow rookie, Nikita Mazepin, helps pay the bills through his title sponsorship.
It needs remembering that Mick was skiing with his dad when Michael suffered serious head injuries on December 29th 2013.
Mick has since explained that his dad was his “idol and role model” but he gives nothing away about the ex-world champion’s current medical condition.
Mick Schumacher pictured with his dad years ago at the Monaco Grand PrixCredit: Xposure
Schumacher Jr now hopes to follow in his father’s footstepsCredit: Rex Features
Michael Schumacher turned 50 in January but has not been seen in public since he fell and hit his head in a skiing accidentCredit: PA:Press Association
It is a fiercely guarded secret and that is the families prerogative and one that Mick respects.
But it does not mean he ignores his father’s achievements in F1. In fact, it is the opposite, he embraces it.
In F2, Mick raced with “SCH” to represent his position on the timing screens, but that has now been switched to “MSC” the three letters used by his father to distinguish himself from his brother Ralf.
“It’s quite emotional for me to see MSC on the timing screen again.
“It’s a special bond I have to it, and I hope it’s nice for everybody to see it there.”
There is a further nod to his dad’s achievement hidden behind his racing number for F1.
Michael Schumacher was a seven-time F1 world championCredit: AP:Associated Press
Mick makes no secret his father is his ‘hero and idol’Credit: AFP
He’s picked the number 47. A rather odd choice on the front of it, but also quite poignant.
He added: “Four and seven are two of the numbers that I really like.
“Four for [the number I raced with in] F3 and the seven because seven is a number that is very close to me as well, partly because of that [his dad’s seven titles].
“If we calculated all the birthdays of our family together it would equal 47.
“So it was a pretty nice feature to it and I think it just underlined that we should choose that number.”
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