Formula 1: Mick Schumacher to join Haas for 2021 season

BY: bbc.com

Mick Schumacher, the son of seven-time Formula 1 world champion Michael, has signed to race for Haas next season.

The US-based team said the 21-year-old had signed a "multi-year contract". He will partner Russian Nikita Mazepin, who was confirmed on Tuesday.

Schumacher, a member of the Ferrari driver academy, leads the F2 series going into this weekend's final round.

"The prospect of being on the Formula 1 grid next year makes me incredibly happy," said a "speechless" Schumacher.

German Schumacher thanked Haas and Ferrari for their "trust", adding: "I also want to acknowledge and extend my love to my parents. I know that I owe them everything. I have always believed that I would realise my dream of Formula 1.

"A huge thank you must also go to all the great motorsport fans out there who have supported me throughout my career. I will give it my all, as I always do, and I look forward to going on this journey together with Haas F1 and them."

Haas team boss Gunther Steiner said Schumacher had "earned the opportunity" with his performances in Formula 2.

Schumacher's F1 debut next year will come on the 30th anniversary of his father's own entry to the sport, at the 1991 Belgian Grand Prix.

Michael Schumacher had a glittering career which ended with him being the most successful driver of all time, with 91 wins and seven World Championships.

Britain's Lewis Hamilton has this year surpassed Schumacher's win record and equalled his tally of championships.

Michael's medical condition is unknown following a skiing accident in 2013 in which he suffered severe head injuries. The 52-year-old has not been seen in public since.

His son's career has been guided carefully by the family and Michael's former manager, Sabine Kehm, to ease him through the motorsport ranks while keeping the inevitable public interest off his shoulders as much as possible.

He won the European Formula 3 championship in his second year in the category in 2018, made his F2 debut last season, winning a race at the Hungarian Grand Prix, and has won two races so far in a consistent 2020.

Schumacher is 14 points clear of Briton Callum Ilott with two races to go at this weekend's round at the Sakhir Grand Prix in Bahrain.

Mick Schumacher has said comparisons with his father were "never a problem" for him, and described Michael as "my idol and very special".