Ferrari announced on Tuesday that Mick Schumacher and Callum Ilott will compete in Formula 1 in free practice for the Eifel Grand Prix next Friday. Schumacher will enter an Alfa Romeo and Ilott will enter a Hare. Robert Shwartzman will be in action later this year, along with a second session for Schumacher. To prepare them for the race, they went on the track today in an older Ferrari.
First meters in an F1 car
The three drivers mentioned came into action on Wednesday at the Ferrari Fiorano test track. They all entered the 2018 Ferrari SF71H. It went without a hitch, as the three of them quickly mastered the car, says Marco Matassa, the technical director of the Ferrari Driver Academy, on the Ferrari website. “It’s not easy to switch from the driving style demanded from a Formula 2 car to one best suited to Formula 1.”
“The car has much more power, a significantly more sophisticated braking system and power steering that requires sensitivity and precision to use properly. However, they were all quick and immediately began running at a good pace. I believe the laps they did today will be very useful when Mick and Callum run on Friday at the Nurburgring.”
“It was very useful to get used to all the procedures again, which are pretty complex and also with how a team works in this top level of the sport. I can’t wait to jump into the cockpit in Germany and it will be nice to take part in a practice session for the first time in front of my home crowd. In the team, there are some mechanics who worked with my father and that will make the day even more special,” says Mick Schumacher about his day on the track.
It wasn’t just Schumacher who had a great day, the same goes for Ilott: “Today I was able to get to grips with the car with just ten days to go to my debut on a Grand Prix weekend. What struck me about the SF71H was its aero efficiency, which means you have grip levels you just don’t find in other categories. Then there’s the extreme power from the engine and instant braking.”
Finally, Shwartzman: “When you accelerate the horsepower never seems to stop. The brakes are equally impressive: the car stops when it feels as though it’s too late to make the corner. Apart from the actual driving, it was also special to work with the team.” In short, three young drivers who are all impressed.