As it turns out, Mercedes team principal, Toto Wolff’s earlier comments were essentially a guarantee that Mick Schumacher would receive the third seat at Mercedes as now it’s been officially confirmed to be the case.
Since Schumacher lost his seat at Haas, there was no guarantee of a return, but with a position as the reserve driver at Mercedes, Schumacher’s future looks a little brighter. It’s a cause for optimism for fans wishing to see the Schumacher name return to the front of the grid.
Schumacher has also ended his association with the Ferrari Driver Academy after four years in order to be free to take the seat at Mercedes.
Mercedes confirmed that Schumacher will be undertaking simulator duties, marketing duties, and will be present at every Grand Prix in 2023.
Schumacher believes this is a fresh start for his F1 career and is excited to see what he can learn to improve himself as a driver at the team, “I am thrilled to be part of the Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS F1 Team as their reserve driver for 2023, and I am committed to give it my all to contribute to their performance in this very competitive and professional environment.
“I take this as a new start, and I am just excited and grateful to Toto and everybody involved for putting their trust in me. F1 is such a fascinating world, and you never stop learning, so I look forward to absorbing more knowledge and putting in all my efforts for the benefit of the Mercedes team.”
Wolff has had nothing but words of praise for Schumacher saying, “Mick is a talented young driver and we’re delighted to have him join the team. He is a hard worker, has a calm and methodical approach and is still hungry to learn and improve as a driver.
“These are all important qualities and we’re excited for him to help us develop the W14. We also know that with two years of experience racing in Formula 1 under his belt, he will be ready to step into the car at short notice to replace either Lewis or George, should that need arise.”
We can see that reserve driver positions have the potential to earn a racing seat, as we saw with Nyck de Vries, and as we’re sure Daniel Ricciardo is hoping for. This is good news for Schumacher, even if his departure was undeserved.