Schumacher given reserve role with Ferrari in 2022


Haas driver, Mick Schumacher will share the reserve driver role at Ferrari next season along with Antonio Giovinazzi.

The German, a graduate of the Ferrari Driver Academy, hasn't had the opportunity to make an impression in his debut season, mainly due to the fact that he was driving a two year old car, however, he has regularly seen off teammate Nikita Mazepin.

Clearly keen to see him step up a gear in 2022, while covering itself should either of its regular drivers, Carlos Sainz or Charles Leclerc, become unavailable, Ferrari has Schumacher as its reserve along with former Alfa Romeo driver, Giovinazzi.

The German will be on standby for the Maranello outfit at 11 races, whilst Giovinazzi will be on duty for the remaining 12.

"The reason we've got a Ferrari Driver Academy is to identify who can be the Ferrari driver for the future," said team boss, Mattia Binotto, "and part of it is if you are doing well, no doubt that you might have opportunities.

"It will be his second season next year, he is a Ferrari driver, coming from the Ferrari academy," Binotto continued. "I'm very happy that he can be part of the team as a reserve driver whenever that will be necessary, but hopefully not.

"I think Mick through the season did well," said the Italian. "He improved himself, not only in terms of consistency, but also in terms of speed. If I look at the last races, he was a lot closer to the cars ahead, while Haas didn't really develop the car at all.

"So the fact that he was closer is he proved that he had a good improvement on the speed itself."

Revealing that Giovinazzi will be available to both customer teams, Haas and Alfa Romeo, should one of their drivers become available, Binotto admitted that in view of the rules overhaul next season it was important that Ferrari had access to a driver with experience of the new cars.

"Those cars will be a lot different to the current one for driving style," he admitted, "and I think it will be important to have one driver that knows those cars as a reserve driver.

"I can still count on Antonio because he's a good driver," he added, "he has proved to be a good driver. Antonio will have a full programme of simulator to bring him up to speed in terms of 2022 driving style."

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Published: 22/12/2021
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