Michael Schumacher 'would have changed' Haas treatment of son Mick

Michael Schumacher’s ‘presence’ would have made F1 team Haas treat his son Mick differently, says his brother Ralf, after they axed the 24-year-old amid a ‘bullying’ storm and after repeated costly crashes

  • Mick Schumacher was axed by Haas after a disappointing 2022 season 
  • Haas team principal Guenther Steiner has denied claims he bullied Schumacher
  • Ralf believes Steiner would have acted differently with Michael’s ‘presence’ 

Ralf Schumacher believes if his brother Michael had been present during Mick’s two seasons with Haas, then their team principal Guenther Steiner ‘would have behaved differently’.

The American outfit axed the son of the seven-time champion at the end of last season after repeatedly costly crashes and a ‘bullying’ storm – allegations that Steiner has since denied.

Steiner was caught in the most recent season of Netflix’s Drive to Survive calling Mick a ‘dead man walking’ following a crash at the Monaco Grand Prix – among other comments criticising his driving during the 2022 season. 

Michael Schumacher has not been seen in public since a life-changing skiing accident back in December 2013 on the French Alps which left him with brain damage. 

Speaking to F1-Insider, Ralf believes Michael’s ‘presence’ would have changed Steiner’s behaviour.

Mick Schumacher (right) was axed from Haas after repeatedly costly crashes last season amid a ‘bullying’ storm involving team principal Guenther Steiner (left)

Ralf Schumacher believes that if his brother Michael (pictured) – was present during his son Mick’s two seasons at Haas, that Steiner ‘would have behaved differently’

He said: ‘I think it’s a shame that it had to come to this. I think that as a seasoned man you don’t treat a young person like that.

‘Everyone has to and can withstand pressure in Formula 1. But that was just too much.

‘And I also believe – and this bothers me the most – that if my brother had been there, Steiner would often have behaved differently.

‘I just think Michael’s presence would have been enough.

‘But again, everyone does it the way they want. But Mick is of course family and you have to understand me: when you treat my family like that, I don’t like it, as Ralf Schumacher.’

Making his F1 debut in 2021, Mick received most of the plaudits as he comprehensively outperformed his team-mate Nikita Mazepin – though neither driver scored a point.

However, Mick struggled against the more experienced Kevin Magnussen last year – scoring 12 points compared to the Dane’s 25 – and the frequency of his crashes were costly for the team.

A whole episode of the Drive to Survive series was dedicated to Steiner and American owner Gene Haas sacking the younger Schumacher.   

Steiner said Mick Schumacher was a ‘dead man walking’ in a scathing phone call with team boss Gene Haas after the 24-year-old’s crash during the Monaco Grand Prix

Ralf Schumacher believes Steiner’s criticism towards his nephew last season was ‘too much’

Mick Schumacher had a number of costly crashes and scored just 12 points last season compared to his much more experienced team Kevin Magnussen who gained 25

After a crash during qualifying for the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix last year, Steiner said: ‘We give him a year to learn – what does he do on the second day? He f***ing destroys the car, just because the other guy (Magnussen) is faster.’

As previously reported, Steiner has denied bullying Mick, who was replaced by the more experienced Nico Hulkenberg for the 2023 season.

He claimed his criticism was spur-of-the-moment and that his more moderate interpretations of Mick’s driving abilities were left on the cutting-room floor for Netflix.   

Since leaving Haas, Mick has been given the role of reserve driver at Mercedes, meaning he could step up into a race seat if Lewis Hamilton or George Russell are unable to compete on a weekend for any reason. 

Source: Read Full Article