Mick Schumacher: 'Being compared to my father is no problem'

By Andrew BensonChief F1 writer
My dad is my idol - Mick Schumacher

Mick Schumacher says he has no problem with being compared to his father - seven-time Formula 1 world champion Michael Schumacher.

Mick, 19, is embarking on his first season in Formula 2 this year, beginning in Bahrain on 29-31 March.

"Being compared to my father was never a problem for me," he said.

"Being compared to the best driver in F1 history is the goal you want to achieve and to have that as my idol and father is very special."

Mick Schumacher is driving this year for the leading Prema team, for whom new Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc was driving when he won the Formula 2 title in his debut season in 2017.

Michael Schumacher suffered severe brain injuries in a skiing accident in December 2013 and has not been seen in public since. His family have said they want to keep his medical condition private because they believe that is what he would wish.

Schumacher Jr added: "I feel honoured to be compared to him because I just learn and try to improve."

Schumacher museum
Mick Schumacher is following in his father's footsteps after being selected for the Ferrari driver academy

The 19-year-old joined the Ferrari driver academy last winter and is expected to do two F1 tests as part of that deal. These are likely to be with the affiliated Alfa Romeo team.

The German driver, who was speaking in a video interview released by the Prema teamexternal-link and his management, said being part of Ferrari's young driver programme was "very positive".

He added: "I can learn very much from Ferrari because they have so much experience and I will want to work with them to achieve the maximum I can.

"The first impressions I had from Ferrari was very heart-opening, welcoming me in a family which was always part of my family."

He said he expected his biggest challenge in F2 this season would be getting used to the Pirelli tyres.

These are similar to those used in F1 and are notorious for causing problems for drivers coming to them from categories where other tyres are used because they behave so differently.

Pirelli tyres require careful management because they have a tendency to overheat if they are pushed too hard, so have to be driven within their limits, a characteristic which tends not to be as extreme on other racing tyres.

Schumacher, who won the European Formula 3 series last year, said: "The step [up] itself isn't that huge. In terms of lap times, we're quite a bit quicker [in F2] but it is more understanding the tyres. That will be the most difficult part."

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