Ferrari happy with Schumacher's F1 progress despite rookie errors

Ferrari says it has been impressed with the job that Mick Schumacher has done in his Formula 1 rookie season, despite some obvious mistakes.

Ferrari happy with Schumacher's F1 progress despite rookie errors
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Schumacher, who is a member of the Ferrari Driver Academy, has had a challenging season trying to get to grips with the tricky Haas car.

While he has shown maturity and to be very much a team player, the German has been involved in some incidents with teammate Nikita Mazepin and had a big practice crash ahead of the Hungarian Grand Prix.

But having delivered a season-best result of 12th place in Hungary last time, Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto thinks that there are encouraging signs of progress that he hopes can continue over the second half of the campaign.

“Mick in his very first year in F1 driving for Haas, I think we said at the start of the season that the objective for him was first no pressure, but to make sure that he is learning,” said Binotto. “So 2021 has to be for him an important year in terms of learning. And I think if we look at that objective he is doing well.

“I think Mick since the start of the season is doing well, he is learning, he is progressing. Obviously a few mistakes, but that's part of the learning process.

“So I think overall in terms of balance so far, we can be happy. What’s important for him is to continue developing and progressing in the second half. But I'm confident he can do that.”

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While satisfied with the progress of Schumacher, Binotto says Ferrari cannot be as pleased with the results of its other FDA youngsters.

In Formula 2, Robert Shwartzman is currently third in the standings, having taken two wins so far this season, while Marcus Armstrong is down in 14th spot with the best result of a second place at Silverstone.

Across in F3, Arthur Leclerc is down in eighth place overall having taken just a single victory in France so far.

Reflecting on the FDA performances, Binotto said: “If I look at the junior drivers for the Ferrari Driver Academy, I think there's no doubt that overall in terms of results it is not as good as last year.

“Last year, I think especially in F2, we had great results, which is not the case [this year]. So I think overall we cannot be as happy as we were.”

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