Mick Schumacher likened his Canadian Grand Prix to a cake without icing after a power unit problem denied the Haas driver a likely first Formula 1 points finish.
Schumacher started from a career-best sixth place after an excellent performance in the wet Montreal qualifying session.
He was jumped by Esteban Ocon after being boxed in at Turn 2 and later on the first lap he was jumped by George Russell at the hairpin but then settled into a good rhythm.
Schumacher was handling the rear tire slip well initially and although he began to come under pressure from Zhou Guanyu, having dropped out of Ocon’s DRS range, he appeared to be in control before quickly reversing into the lap before coming to a stop. .
He said the brake pedal didn’t feel like it used to and then in turn 3 on lap 19 the engine developed an audible problem, allowing Zhou to pass using the DRS on the run into Turns 8/9 Esses. Just like Schumacher. he was being instructed to stop the car.
With that, Schumacher missed a good chance to get his first F1 points finish, given that Ocon finished sixth and Zhou eighth.
A surprisingly long exchange over the radio followed Schumacher stopping and retiring from the race, a telling revelation of just how painful this was given the larger circumstances.
“Sorry man, you were on it,” said his race engineer.
“F***!” Schumacher responded. “That sucks, doesn’t it?”
“Yes, big time. You were doing good, Mick. You were doing a great job.
“Anyway, man…thanks for this weekend.”
“You are doing it, Mick. He is coming towards us.”
This was shaping up to be a full Schumacher weekend, which has been missed so far in 2022.
Schumacher really felt at home in the wet conditions and did a great job. He was very happy and, given that he is under a lot of scrutiny, he felt that he demonstrated his credentials as an F1 driver.
That was a bit of a premature statement simply because there was still the race to go, so it’s a bold thing to say after qualifying. But it was a timely reminder of Schumacher’s potential so that he can be forgiven for feeling pleased with himself. And at least he backed it up with his performance at the start of the grand prix.
“We built the cake, we just couldn’t put the icing on it,” Schumacher said afterwards.
“Then, I have to put the icing on it!”
He added: “It’s quite annoying because I think we had a good car, great pace.
“I’m sure there would have been a good reward for our hard work this season, but we have to wait for more.”
It’s the last good chance Schumacher has had to score points, with Miami and Spain the other notable opportunities being missed for different reasons.
SCHUMACHER’S UNFORTUNATE RACE IN 2022
|The race||What happened?|
|Bahrain||Spin on the opening lap|
|Saudi Arabia||Crashed in qualifying, race lost|
|Australia||The team struggled but beat Magnussen|
|Imola||Turn on the initial lap|
|miami||Collided with Vettel late while on points|
|Spain||Wrong strategy costs likely points to finish|
|Monaco||Crashed out of the race|
|Azerbaijan||Lack of pace all weekend after FP1 problem|
|Canada||Engine problem while running in points|
Schumacher is getting adept at finding the positives, but he didn’t need to look far to find them here. The performance was a clear silver lining.
“We’re coming off some tough races now, but it wasn’t the first weekend of racing that was good,” he said.
“I felt that this was especially good because the whole package was good.
“We had no problems with the car, we were able to feel comfortable in every situation, we knew we had a good pace as well.
“Obviously it’s very frustrating, but these things happen, it’s Formula 1, everything is quite nervous.
“We have to swallow that pill, again we have a lot of positive things that we can take from here. Really excited for the next one.”
So far this season, Schumacher has tended to be anonymous or find dramatic ways to miss out on the top 10 spot. Haas’ effective ultimatum to stop crashing grabbed the headlines and was key in determining whether Schumacher has a future with the team. but his season has also had other setbacks.
“Hopefully luck will change eventually,” said Schumacher, who was coy when discussing his contract situation with Haas.
If he continues to perform like this, he will break his points and could secure his future in F1 at the same time.