After the unveiling of the new Uralkali Haas VF-21 and the announcement of the new title partner, Mick Schumacher released some statements to the press, referring to his surname and to how difficult was his first seat fit in Formula 1.
Media have often referred to how difficult it must, sometimes, be to carry such an important surname in Formula 1 and in sports in general.
But Mick Schumacher hasn't arrived where he is today because of it, he's still young, but has the makings of a champion.
He won the 2018 FIA F3 European Championship, moved up to Formula 2 in 2019, managed to win the 2020 Formula 2 Championship just one year later with Prema Team, and this year will be deservedly driving a F1 car.
The 21-year-old said that bearing his famous name is a positive thing, because he is “proud” to continue its association with F1.
“I have never said that it was pressure, I don’t think I’ll ever say it. I’m very happy to carry that surname and very happy to carry that name back into F1" Mick said.
“I’m very proud of it, I’m happy to have it. It’s like a boost for me and it gives me motivation every single day to work as much as I can and as hard I can”.
He joined Haas last year and made his debut with the american team during the Abu Dhabi weekend last season, before driving the VF-20 at the post-season tests.
He stated that he has already bonded very well with the whole team - in a recent interview with Sportbid, Günther Steiner, team principal of Uralkali Haas F1 Team, revealed how the mechanics were thrilled to hear that the young Schumacher would race for their team in 2021 - and he hopes they will help him peform at a high level in this upcoming season:
“Definitely there are a few different factors [to dealing with pressure], obviously for me the biggest one which I’ve done already is you want to have a very strong bond to the team” Schumacher said.
“That’s what I aim for and I have, which I’m very happy about that. That’s one of the strengths, and being as mentally strong as we can be in every situation is really important"
“Then basically just starting off the season on a high and hopefully we’ll be able to carry through everything I’ve learned in my past years and perform in a high level of what we need”.
He also spoke about how exciting it was to get his Formula 1 seat fit done with Haas and at the same time of how they managed to do it in such complicated conditions, due to Covid-19 and the consequential mandatory quarantine.
“Obviously, it hasn't been easy as travelling to England has been very restricted,” he explained - “It was very difficult for me to get my seat fit done"
“We had a plan, and then the rules changed, and I had to self quarantine. So I had to find a spot where I could give up 10 days basically to give myself the room to go to the team for one and a half days, which is really not a lot for seven days of quarantining".
He added that the seat feels good for now, but something needs some modifications that that you only take to understand on track:
“Obviously, the seat fit was a very long day,” he said - “We started I think, at eight o'clock in the morning, and then we finished at 10:30pm. But it was worth it. We managed to get a seat done, which was really good"
“It feels good on the outside obviously. A seat is always very special, but it can feel very good when you're stationary and the moment you drive, it feels crap"
“So it's something we'll just have to figure out on track. And after that, we'll do modifications. We have to, but I'm pretty sure I've got a good seat. And now it is all about trying and perfect it” he concluded.