Haas praises: Mick has improved a lot
We still don’t know if Mick Schumacher will continue at Haas. At Suzuka, he again put in a good performance in the race, but again was not rewarded. Statistically it could be better for Mick: he has scored points in only two of the 18 races, but seven times since the Spielberg race in July. Things were looking good after two top 10 finishes in a row.
But Haas has recognized Schumacher’s upward trend, which team-mate Kevin Magnussen is increasingly in control. Chief Engineer Ayao Komatsu says the early points at Silverstone were hugely liberating for him at the time. “And then he followed that up with the show in Spielberg. So the confidence is there,” he says.
Komatsu praises: “He is always sitting with his engineers and Friday night trying to understand what he did wrong and where he can improve. He always works hard. After a season and a half since his debut, it has finally paid off.”
“He was always close to scoring points but couldn’t get them. But when he got them at Silverstone it was a big step. Yes, he has improved a lot this year.”
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19 years ago today…
… Michael Schumacher won his sixth world title and became the only record world champion in Formula 1. His road in Suzuka was difficult and not without incident. In the end it was just enough against McLaren’s Kimi Raikkonen, who lost by two points.
Cockpit overview for 2023
And in case you have already forgotten what the driver situation looks like for 2023: Here is an overview of all drivers who have been confirmed so far.
Photo Gallery: The Formula 1 Drivers 2023
Williams: Driver cancellations are not destabilizing
Williams is one of two teams still looking for a new driver for 2023. Formula 2 driver Logan Sargeant is currently the favourite, but the American is actually not the first choice. Because twice this season, potential drivers signed elsewhere. Oscar Piastri did not want the cockpit at Williams and went to McLaren, Nyck de Vries signed with AlphaTauri, although Jost Capito named him as a candidate for 2023.
When asked whether these cancellations would destabilize Williams, performance director Dave Robson answered with a resounding no: “We’re focusing on the here and now,” he says.
“Once Nyck got in the car at Monza, we were able to shift the focus and focus on that, so we don’t pay too much attention to what the speculations are for next year over the weekend,” said Robson.
“Yes there are preparations going on in the background but that’s what Jost and his team are dealing with and our job is to focus on the weekend and push this car forward and then the specs for the car from next year, no matter who it is. drives.”
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Hamilton: Should encourage people
Hamilton himself says: “I think we should always remember that this is a team. There are people working here who have been here for over 20 years and have won eight titles since I’ve been here and even more before that. Do you know how to drive a car? builds that fight for the world championship.”
“For me it’s just about supporting them as much as possible. Of course I have to try to keep everyone encouraged and make sure we leave no stone unturned so that we can compete for the positions we deserve next year.”
Mercedes: Hamilton’s work ethic hasn’t changed
2022 is an unusual year for Lewis Hamilton. For the first time in his career, he could do without a single win in his Grand Prix career. After years of dominance, Mercedes is no longer at the top. “It was tough, especially for Lewis,” said Mercedes technical director Mike Elliott.
Still, the Englishman doesn’t disappoint: “Lewis manages the team. He gives us very good feedback. He works very hard,” he says. “His work ethic hasn’t changed at all this year. He’s here late at night, working with us and trying to get the best out of the car. I think that’s an encouragement to everyone else on the team to see how much he can do.” stops in.”
“I think a personality like Lewis is expected to really lead the team and give energy. I think that’s what we need for a difficult winter.”
Alpine: next underbody version in Austin
Alpine was recently able to further improve performance with a new bottom plate. “It was only a matter of time before we could finally show what’s really inside the car,” said Esteban Ocon, who praised the upgrade after finishing fourth in Suzuka.
But the next underbody upgrade is not far off and should take place at the next race in Austin. “This is version four of our bottom,” said sporting director Alan Permane. “In Austin it will be 4B. We have another upgrade, but it won’t be as big as this one.”
De Vries: Leadership not dependent on experience
Nyck de Vries will make his debut as a regular Formula 1 driver next year alongside Yuki Tsunoda. Although the Japanese has two seasons more experience, de Vries is six years older and, according to Helmut Marko, he also has more leadership. Should he be the team leader right away?
“I take that as a compliment,” says the Dutchman. “I don’t think you need Formula 1 experience per se to be a leader. I think it has to do with character, personality and how you are.”
“Even though I haven’t had a season yet [in der Formel 1] I know what I need from the car, the package and the people around me to achieve something together.”
Ricciardo wants more flexible start times
Daniel Ricciardo would like to see Formula 1 have more flexibility in terms of start times. The statements come after the Japanese Grand Prix, which was only able to drive 28 laps after a two-hour rain stop.
“We want to race,” emphasizes Ricciardo. “I wish we could do better… I know it’s easy to say now, but we knew this rain was coming. It’s like 2014.
He says: “Even if you put the race forward an hour, we might win 20 laps at the beginning and you can make it another race.”
However, Formula 1 would have had to say goodbye to the three-hour window, because then the race would have ended an hour earlier – at which point everyone was still waiting for the restart.
Mexico: Special Trophy for Pole Setters
The pole-setter at the Formula 1 race in Mexico can look forward to a special award: he will receive two replica helmets from the Rodriguez brothers, after whom the Circuit Hermanos Rodriguez is named. Pedro and Ricardo Rodriguez were among the most famous drivers in Mexico.
Ricardo drove in Formula 1 for Ferrari and died in 1962 on the infamous Peraltada bend at just 20 years of age. His brother Pedro did not enter Formula 1 until after his death and won two Grands Prix for Cooper and BRM.
Commemorating the anniversaries of Ricardo’s death and the first Formula 1 race in Mexico – both 60 years ago – these special helmets are available for the fastest qualifying race.
Hamilton: Fighting Ocon was ‘most fun’
Although he was ultimately unable to overtake Esteban Ocon, Lewis Hamilton enjoyed the fight against the Frenchman.
“I had a lot of fun,” says the Briton of the fight with Ocon. “He did a great job staying on track and leading the way. He was obviously very, very fast on the straights. So I tried everything, but I think we really had the most fun.”
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Suzuka in analysis
Anyone who wants to discuss the events of Suzuka again in a friendly and pleasant atmosphere can listen to the latest edition of Starting Grid, the podcast about Formula 1. Kevin Scheuren, Sophie Affeldt and Ruben Zimmermann all met important things from there Japanese busy.
You can listen to it in a podcatcher of your choice or preferably directly on meinsportpodcast.de.
Pietro Fittipaldi: FT1 in Mexico and Abu Dhabi
Speaking of Haas, the race team has finally assigned its Friday assignments. Unsurprisingly, test pilot Pietro Fittipaldi is given the orders and will drive in Mexico and Abu Dhabi after Antonio Giovinazzi can replace Kevin Magnussen in Austin.
Fittipaldi still qualifies for the rookie rule, despite having already raced two Grands Prix in 2020 at Sachir and Abu Dhabi, replacing Romain Grosjean after the latter’s fire accident. Because according to the training rule, rookie drivers are allowed to have a maximum of two Grands Prix in their pocket.
The team has not yet announced when Mick Schumacher and when Kevin Magnussen will serve.
Benefited from Magnussen
One of the reasons for Mick’s improvement is the arrival of Kevin Magnussen, who had replaced Nikita Masepin and was a significant improvement over the Russian. He had no chance against Schumacher last year and was therefore not the hoped-for reference.
Anders Magnussen: “When Kevin came back for tests in Bahrain, he was a very different person than he was two years ago,” says Komatsu. “He’s so open, appreciates a challenge and is also very open to sharing information, so Mick benefited a lot from having a reference.”
“We need two drivers pushing each other. You don’t want one driver to always be three tenths ahead of his teammate. We need a competitor within the team and Mick has improved on that.”