Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN were set to give Formula 2 driver Mick Schumacher his first run in a Formula 1 car in the first practice session at the Nürburgring on Friday.
Unfortunately, due to bad weather conditions, the session was unable to start and was eventually cancelled meaning the young German driver wasn’t able to to get any running in. The current Formula 2 championship leader was left to watch the rain fall and fog roll over the German track, ending his chance of making his first appearance in an official Formula 1 weekend session.
Even though he wasn’t able to jump in the seat, he has still enjoyed his weekend so far, being part of the Alfa Romeo team.
Schumacher said: “I would have loved to go out and drive, but it’s still great to be here. I am grateful to Alfa Romeo Racing ORLEN and the Ferrari Driver Academy for the opportunity to be with the team. It is very useful to be alongside the engineers, be part of the briefings and work with the crew: this experience is teaching me a lot about the processes and the philosophy of an F1 operation.
“It would have been great to get some data for the team and I am also sorry for the fans who didn’t get to see any action, but in the end that is how it went. We can only hope there is a bit more running for the rest of the weekend.”
Schumacher and his fellow Ferrari Driver Academy member Callum Ilott, who was set to run with the Haas F1 Team, will have their opportunities rescheduled for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix weekend in December. Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto says the upcoming races in Portugal, Italy and Turkey were not possible, while the double header in Bahrain will see Schumacher go up against Ilott, amongst others, in the battle for the title.
“I think they will (get another chance), but not very soon,” Binotto is quoted as saying by Racer.com. “If you look at the next races: Portugal, Imola, Turkey, these are all brand-new circuits for the top teams and top drivers, so I think the top drivers will require some practice running, and then it’s Bahrain where they’ve got their own F2 races, which is important and they need to stay focused.
“So Abu Dhabi will be the next opportunity. We need to have some patience. It’s a shame for today, it would have been a great opportunity. They prepared themselves well, they had some running and testing in Fiorano to prepare, but that’s the weather and we cannot change it.”