Sebastian Vettel has praised Mick Schumacher for doing an ‘incredible job’ with a poor car in 2021, with the German crediting his countryman for giving the Uralkali Haas F1 Team something to cheer about in what was a terrible year for them.
Schumacher, the 2020 FIA Formula 2 champion, moved into Formula 1 for 2021 with Haas but endured a car that was difficult to drive and was not developed at all as the team focused purely in putting their resources into developing the 2022 car.
However, despite being the slowest car on the grid – sometimes by a big margin – Schumacher was able to put the VF-21 into Q2 in Qualifying twice in France and Turkey, a massive achievement in relation to what car he was driving.
And this has not been unnoticed by Vettel, who has been acting as some kind of mentor to Schumacher, and he has giving praise to the Haas driver for his level of performance.
“Well, I think it’s difficult to judge because the car has been so far off,” Vettel is quoted as saying by Motorsport.com.
“But, you know, for those who are looking closely – obviously I’ve been following – and yeah, he did an incredible job with such a poor car to reach Q2 a couple of times, to have strong showings in the race, fight some of the cars that are much faster, or stick with the cars are supposed to be much faster.
“That’s a great effort, and even more so I think it’s been a huge lift for the entire team. I think the offset from the start of the season for that team was poor because they had no development, and they were far behind.”
Vettel believes Schumacher also showed a tremendous work ethic throughout the year, and he hopes that he has the car to show his obvious talent in 2022.
“I think if you look throughout the year Mick has been very happy, enthusiastic and happy to put work in and he’s been one of the first ones – if not the first one – every single day to come to the paddock, one of the latest ones to leave and showing huge interest in trying to push the team along,” said Vettel.
“So apart from the job on track that he did, apart from maybe some very small mistakes that happen in your first year, he did a great job. So, I really wish that he gets a much better car next year so he can show what he’s able to do.”