NEW THEORY ON MICK SCHUMACHER EMERGES AS FERRARI LEGEND'S SON EYES A RETURN TO F1 GRID

Mick Schumacher 's return to F1 could be facilitated by Flavio Briatore, it has been claimed.

Infamous Italian businessman Briatore, who was banned for life after the 2008 'Crashgate scandal' before having that overturned on appeal, has made a comeback of his own as Alpine 's new executive advisor.

He's been tasked with turning around their fortunes after a disappointing start to 2024, with the French team hoping he can work some of his magic. That included signing Mick's legendary father Michael in 1991 when he jumped ship from Jordan to Benetton, where he won the first two of his seven world titles.

Now, three decades later, German publication Bild suggest Briatore could be looking to give Schumacher Jr a drive next season. Mick is already competing for Alpine in the World Endurance Championship.

He's made no secret of his desire to return to the pinnacle of motorsport, though, telling them: "Formula 1 remains my big goal. It's good that I can drive in the WEC. That keeps me fit on the track, it expands my knowledge, skills and experience. And the people at Alpine see how I work."

Even before Briatore's dramatic return was confirmed last week, Mick was on Alpine's radar for their F1 line-up, reports the Express. It only serves to further boost his prospects of re-joining the grid in 2025,

Team principal Bruno Famin has been very happy with Mick's performances in the WEC, telling Sky Germany : "I'm very happy with Mick, he's super fast. But that's not the main thing in the WEC.

"You have to drive at a consistently high level and have a good team spirit. I'm very impressed with him because he adapted his attitude to the long-distance races from day one.

"He has a very good relationship with his team-mates. Everything is open for 2025, everyone talks to everyone. It would be a mistake not to have Mick on the list."

Mick has repeatedly seen his options of a drive dwindle over the past 18 months, and the latest setback for him was Williams shifting their focus to Carlos Sainz as he prepares to leave Ferrari. But Alpine remains a viable potential as Esteban Ocon will be departing at the end of the season, with Pierre Gasly expected to re-sign.

He's been given the backing of legendary ex-Ferrari chief Jean Todt, another close ally of his dad, who argued he's "better than half of" the current driver line-up.

"Maybe Mick is too kind, in F1 you have to stick your elbows out," Todt added. "Many think [Mick's surname] is an advantage, but it has become a disadvantage. The expectations placed on him [at Haas] were unreasonable and the car was not competitive.

"He has never been able to show his potential. The pressure he was subjected to was unfair. And I know, because I was also team principal, that a driver's performance suffers immediately if he doesn't feel comfortable."

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2024-06-25T05:10:27Z dg43tfdfdgfd