Mick Schumacher won’t be watching Drive to Survive: ‘That’s a personal choice’

Michelle Foster
Mick Schumacher looking down the pit lane while standing in front of the Mercedes pit wall. Bahrain February 2023

Reserve driver Mick Schumacher looking down the pit lane while standing in front of the Mercedes pit wall. Bahrain February 2023

Mick Schumacher didn’t watch the Drive to Survive episode entitled ‘Like Father, Like Son?’ in which his former team boss Guenther Steiner is heard berating him to Gene Haas after his “f***ing” Jeddah crash.

Although Schumacher was only informed on the eve of the season finale in Abu Dhabi that Haas would not be renewing his contract, it seems his seat was under pressure already at race two of the campaign, the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

That weekend the German suffered a huge crash in qualifying, wrecking his Haas to the tune of “between half a million and a million”.

Steiner was caught on camera speaking with Haas team owner Gene Haas about his driver’s crash.

“Gave him a year to learn and what does he do in the second race? He f****** destroys the car just because the other one is faster,” raged the Italian.

Haas replied: “Have a little talk with Schumacher. He’s getting in over his head.”

Five races later when he crashed in Monaco, another hefty repair bill on the line, Haas told Steiner that it “needs talent, you can’t develop talent” before adding “that is the dead man walking area.”

Steiner replied: “If he doesn’t pull his trousers up, he will be soon.”

But while his team bosses’ conversations made for much-watch TV for Drive to Survive, Schumacher says that’s one thing he won’t be doing.

“I didn’t watch it…that’s a personal choice,” he told Reuters. “I just don’t necessarily feel the need to watch myself on TV, I guess.”

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Leaving Haas at the end of last season, Schumacher was quickly snapped up by Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff who believes the 23-year-old will be back on the grid in the years to come.

Schumacher hopes he’s right.

“One door may close, but another one may open,” he said. “Who knows, in 10 years maybe I say ‘ah, actually it was for the better.

“It definitely meant I had to grow up in a different way. It made me grow up as a person, made me grow up as a racing driver.

“Both years were quite tough, coming from a championship-winning year to basically not having any chances for points in the first (season) and the second one was quite tough in some other ways.

“I think that I’ve grown into a stronger driver hopefully and I’ll be better prepared for whatever comes and waits for me in the future.”

He added: “Obviously I live racing and that’s why I want to do it but if it means that this year I’m not going to get to do that then…I’ll take this year out and everything I can with a learning face and a smile.”

The driver, the son of seven-time F1 World Champion Michael Schumacher, believes he showed enough during his two years on the F1 grid and with his Formula 2 championship to prove that he has what it takes to succeed.

“I think there were some sparks in there where people actually got to see what I can do if I’m in the right position and the right car and everything,” he said.

“There’s still a lot that I want to show.”