Mick Schumacher said his postponed first official practice run in a Formula 1 car gave him a valuable opportunity to experiment with driving techniques.
Two months later, Schumacher finally took part in his first practice session today with Haas, the team he will race for in the 2021 F1 season.
“Everything went well,” declared Schumacher after finishing his hour-and-a-half of running in 18th place. “I’m really happy about how the session went. No major issues on either side so I’m really happy.”
He drove Kevin Magnussen’s car in the first practice session but the team is yet to decide which of its engineering crews will work with each of its two new drivers for the 2021 F1 season. Schumacher’s team mate will be his Formula 2 rival Nikita Mazepin.
Schumacher said he was “quite direct” in his feedback to the team. “I might not have experience in an F1 car as much as some other people do,” he admitted, “nevertheless I’ve been told it’s good to give good feedback on anything I do notice. So from that part I think everything went well. It was a hell of a ride, it was really fun and great to be back in a Formula 1 car.”
Schumacher had his first experiences of practice starts and race simulation runs during the session.
Advert | Become a RaceFans supporter and
“The high-fuel run was quite different to everything I have done before,” he explained. “Up to now I’ve only driven an F1 car on low fuel. So it definitely was valuable information, the time in the car, trying to feel how much can I brake at the same spot, how much can I still push on those soft tyres too.
He owned up to a few minor mistakes as he experimented with different driving techniques. “Obviously you have to sometimes go over the limit to feel where the limit is,” said Schumacher. “To me, it was more about trying little things.”
He said he had “a small moment at turn one after pushing on the softs” but “it wasn’t too dramatic”.
“It was just really trying to see what the car could still do. And then other moments were just me trying some different features on driving style but also on the car itself.
“I’m sure that I’ll find my way through much, much easier and also be able to maybe go more over the limit to try and find it [better] in the junior drive on Tuesday.”
2020 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix
- Mercedes also had MGU-K concerns over Russell’s car
- Ferrari hail “outstanding professional” Vettel after his final drive for team
- 2020 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Star Performers
- Driver line-up confirmed for Yas Marina test, two teams won’t attend
- Paddock Diary: Abu Dhabi Grand Prix