Guenther Steiner says Mick Schumacher ‘lacks consistency’ amid doubts over future

Sam Cooper
Mick Schumacher, Haas, in a press conference. Zandvoort, September 2022.

Haas' Mick Schumacher during the Dutch Grand Prix weekend. Zandvoort, September 2022.

Guenther Steiner says Mick Schumacher needs to deliver good performances more consistently if he wants to retain his Haas seat.

Schumacher’s future in F1 seems to be teetering on the brink as he has only six races left on his current contract and Haas have not been making much noise about that being extended.

The young German joined the team at a difficult time. In his first season, he was part of an all-rookie driver line-up and in 2022, pre-season was disrupted by the late departure of Nikita Mazepin.

Schumacher also had the unwanted tag of reaching fourth place on the all-time list of drivers to go the highest number of races without scoring their first point. Schumacher broke that streak at Silverstone and followed it up with P6 in Austria, but has failed to finish in the top 10 since then.

With his future on the line, his boss Steiner has commented that Schumacher needs to improve his consistency if he is to remain at Haas.

“That hasn’t been decided yet,” Steiner replied when asked who will partner Kevin Magnussen in 2023 by “We are considering what is best for the development of the team. Are we just looking at the technology or the driving element as well?

“I’ll be honest, we don’t know if Mick will stay or not. He has delivered very good races in Canada, Britain and Austria. But he lacks consistency – he would have to deliver strong performances more often. We are not in a hurry regarding the driver question and Mick still has chances to show what he can do.”

Steiner also revealed he was “talking to everybody” following recent reports linking Nico Hulkenberg with a return to F1.

“I’ve spoken to most of the drivers in question, that’s my job,” said Steiner. “There is nothing concrete yet. In any case, we only want to take the smallest risk for the development of the team. You can take a big risk, which is great if it works out but bad if it doesn’t.

“There is nobody on the market from those (experienced drivers) who are currently driving. Except Danny [Ricciardo] maybe. His form is not great at the moment and we don’t know what he will do. Maybe he will take a year off. I’m talking to everybody, as I said.”

The 57-year-old also gave his thoughts on the recent breakdown in talks between Red Bull and Porsche and said when two “alpha companies” meet, there will always be issues.

“My personal opinion is two alpha companies met there,” the Haas boss said. “And that’s always difficult. At 50-50, one has to be the boss. There would have been a stalemate, which would have caused problems. It’s not yet certain Porsche will enter Formula 1 after all, but you have to find a new idea.”