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Mazepin rates debut season 4 out of 5

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10/01/2022

Reflecting on his debut season in F1, Nikita Mazepin has rated his overall performance worthy of 4 out of 5.

The Russian, who missed the final race of the season after testing positive for COVID, was out-qualified by his rookie teammate, Mick Schumacher at the other 20 events - the German having failed to take part in qualifying in Hungary after crashing in free practice - and only finished ahead of him on Sunday afternoon's on three occasions. Indeed, of those three occasions, in Monaco Schumacher was ordered to allow the Russian past, while the other two saw the German compromised by car damage.

While it is accepted that the Haas - essentially an updated 2019 car - was a dog, Mazepin had exactly the same equipment as his teammate, yet it was the German who usually made the most of it.

The bane of rivals for his refusal to yield even when being lapped for the umpteenth time, Mazepin was involved in numerous tangles over the course of the season, not least with his teammate, Silverstone and Monza being prime examples.

In fairness, things did seem to improve as the season progressed, both in terms of his visits to the stewards and general mistakes, though he never appeared to get the hang of track limits. Then again, who did?

Even so, it comes as something of a surprise to see the Russian rate his debut season as being worthy of 4 out of 5.

"I finished school four years ago and that's the last time I was receiving marks and in all honesty I don't really miss it so much," he says, according to Motorsport Week.

"I never think that you should get a five because five is excellence, and I don't know what excellence is," he admits. "Today it might be excellent, but tomorrow I realise I can do something more. So four is the maximum I can give myself.

"So I guess four for sticking through it because the times were really tough this year at certain points. Probably a three for adaptation, because that's hasn't been my strong point and I keep improving on it.

"I used a few different cars this year, so certainly when I used the cars that I have found difficult or heavy, it was the lower moments," he adds.

"Then I also made some mistakes like in the Bahrain race and some other events when I didn't feel like I performed well or I tried too hard and then ultimately lost my lap time like in Brazil, when I believe that we had a chance of out-qualifying Williams or going into Q2.

"That was definitely the low moments, but the high moments is many races. I had a good races in Silverstone, in Brazil and Mexico."

Next up, "Abu Dhabi was my finest hour," insists Michael Masi.

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by Tardis40, 11/01/2022 17:26

"Yes, I crashed in four out of every five events
"

Rating: Positive (2)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

2. Posted by Batman, 11/01/2022 16:12

"Bring John Cleese because I'd like to have an argument please."

Rating: Positive (3)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

3. Posted by Endre, 11/01/2022 15:32

"The dumbest thing about all this is not how he rated himself but the fact that he provided a rating at all. After an entire year of creating controversies even since before his actual F1 "career" started, what he really needed now was some media silence to reflect on 2021 in peace, get his act together and start 2022 with a new mindset. The biggest issue with this guy is not even his talent (he did show some promise in F2) but his attitude and complete lack of any trace of intelligence. He needs a CPU swap ... "

Rating: Positive (4)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

4. Posted by GordonG47, 11/01/2022 12:23

"The Aussies will get this, even if no-one else does:

"Four out of five? Tell 'im he's dreamin'...""

Rating: Positive (3)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

5. Posted by Max Noble, 11/01/2022 8:50

"Quoting: “…I used a few different cars this year…” - OK. So I think he is including the hire cars from the airport to the circuits in his assessment. On the basis he got no speeding tickets, didn’t rear-end anyone, didn’t run Lewis out of road entering a roundabout, had no parking fines, and got his full deposit back… Yes I can see how he awards a 4 out of 5. "

Rating: Positive (3)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

6. Posted by TokyoAussie, 11/01/2022 3:13

"Was he judging based on an inverse logarithmic scale?"

Rating: Positive (4)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

7. Posted by kenji, 11/01/2022 0:35

"Even for rookies there needs to be a level of competence proved, in an F1 car, before they are finally let loose. for an entire season. Maybe they should be graded by a specialist team for a set number of races before being allowed to complete their season. F1 is a dangerous sport and rookies must be held to account for their actions in a most severe manner and progress closely monitored."

Rating: Positive (4)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

8. Posted by danielmb, 10/01/2022 21:08

"I think Nikita was confused by the question. I'm certain he meant to say that his rookie season performance was #4 out of the worst 5 rookie seasons in F1 history. I fully agree with his assertion that he "does not know what excellence is". Apparently, he does not know what abject failure and complete incompetence is either."

Rating: Positive (2)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

9. Posted by Roli, 10/01/2022 19:36

"is it the 1st of April already? You gotta be kidding me! A London black cabbie driver would have done better. If it wasnt for daddy's money you would be picking carrots in a Lincolnshire field. Get a life!"

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10. Posted by Defiant, 10/01/2022 19:08

"I love some light humour on a Monday.

I think we can all agree that that was a very generous score, but I'm willing to see how he does this year with what is hopefully a much better car."

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11. Posted by Batman, 10/01/2022 18:39

"I am amazed by his sense of humility ..."

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12. Posted by Mad Matt, 10/01/2022 12:07

"It's tempting to jump in with the criticism and I certainly agree that 4/5 is ... a little kind but:

The car is, with the best will in the world, crap and difficult to drive.

It may well be that he does a lot better with a better car and while I admire Mick for doing well with the Haas, it doesn't guarantee he'll be the better driver in a better car.

I seem to remember that Fisichella was good with bad cars but it seemed to me that he wasn't the best in a good car, not terrible but not he best.

I suppose we shall see next year if Haas manage to deliver a better car and Nikita can't deliver then even with all that money he'll be out."

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