It is fair to say Ralf Schumacher has continued to be less than impressed by Nikita Mazepin’s first season at Haas in 2021.
Ralf is hardly the most impartial of judges on this particular subject given that the Russian driver has had plenty of in-season run-ins with his nephew, Mick, who occupies the other side of the Haas garage.
But, the ex-Formula 1 driver turned Sky Sports pundit has nevertheless shared his view on Mazepin following the conclusion of his rookie campaign.
“Mazepin was certainly a good driver in Formula 2,” Schumacher is quoted by SpeedWeek as having told Sky Sports F1 in Germany.
“But this year he has developed in the wrong direction and should actually do something else.
“He doesn’t necessarily have to drive Formula 1.”
— Haas F1 Team (@HaasF1Team) December 16, 2021
Ralf thinks Mazepin’s inclusion at Haas hasn’t helped his nephew in his first season in Formula 1 and wishes Mick had someone more experienced to learn from as he looks to carve out his own career in the ‘pinnacle of motorsport’.
“[He needs someone] who can help him,” Schumacher added.
“Someone who can work with him to move the team forward, so that Mick is not alone in a lost cause.”
Having scored zero points in his rookie campaign, albeit in a car that showed time and time again it was nowhere near capable of claiming a top-10 finish, Ralf believes Mick can only be expected to score points in 2022 if Haas give him better machinery to work with next year.
“It depends on what Haas makes available to him,” Ralf said about the prospect of Mick breaking his duck.
“Then it’s up to him to implement it.”
While Mick Schumacher may have zero points to show for his opening year efforts in Formula 1, he has earned special praise from Sebastian Vettel since the end of the campaign for his outstanding work ethic in difficult circumstances.