Mick Schumacher admitted he was “driven by anger” after the first serious mistake of his F1 career in the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.
The Haas rookie, winner of last year’s Formula 2 Championship, had spun during the season-opener in Bahrain but that was only a minor error from which he quickly recovered.
But at Imola, the son of Michael Schumacher made a typical novicey error as he spun while warming his tyres on a damp circuit behind the Safety Car and hit the wall, breaking his front wing.
As the incident had occurred close to the pit entry and scattered debris onto the circuit, the 22-year-old was unable to ‘box’ quickly for a new front wing as the pit lane was closed and he had to drive a couple more laps with his car in the same condition.
Once back out, Schumacher revealed he had been seething with himself and that had affected his driving – something he is keen to learn from as he builds up his Formula 1 experience.
Ultimately, the German was classified 16th, with only his team-mate Nikita Mazepin of those still running behind him.
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“To be honest, I don’t really know what happened,” said Schumacher of his crash. “It went quite quickly, I just lost it and didn’t manage to recover it before the wall.
“I think my driving afterwards was quite driven by my anger – I don’t know if you saw it on the feed but I had a few lock-ups and went into the gravel and stuff.
“Overall, I think that’s something we have to learn from, to regroup myself a bit quicker. In general, I just think I wanted to catch up as quick as I could but unfortunately we were a few laps down.”
It was still a race Schumacher could learn plenty from, for he also experienced a red-flag stoppage period mid-race for the first time in F1 and also found himself battling at one stage with Kimi Raikkonen – one of his father’s old rivals.
“I think it was good to be able to drive with them, to get some info and feelings for how it is to follow [other cars],” added Schumacher.
“At some point, when I was on the C4 [soft tyres] just before the red flag, I felt actually very comfortable, to be close to overtaking Kimi. I think overall we learned a lot and it was very positive.”