F1 stars react to Schumacher news
Sebastian Vettel believes Mick Schumacher fully deserves his first chance to test a Formula 1 car.
Schumacher, the 20-year-old son of racing legend Michael, will make his debut first with Ferrari and then Alfa Romeo across two days of testing in Bahrain from next Tuesday. Mick, who is the reigning European F3 champion, is also taking his first steps in the Formula 2 championship this weekend as he aims to progress to the highest level.
The news of the German's maiden F1 test has inevitably been met with huge media interest, with Mick's press session in the F2 paddock drawing a large audience.
Ferrari driver Vettel's childhood hero was Mick's dad Michael, the seven-time world champion, and he expects the German's son to cope well with such focus.
"Obviously with the name and the son of Michael there's certainly some expectation, but to end up in Formula 1 you need to prove that you have the speed," said Vettel, who has known Mick since the son of a gun was a child.
"So far he has done really well. The way he has developed in the last years, he deserves where he is now.
"Now we should give him the time and peace to do his job. It's not easy as it is for him but, on the other hand, he's used to it, so we will see. But for sure it's a big excitement when he will be in the car."
While his own father competed in a different disciple of motorsport, McLaren driver Carlos Sainz knows well about the pressure and expectation of following in the footsteps of a legendary racing dad.
Carlos Sainz Snr was a two-time World Rally champion and is still considered one of the most legendary names in motorsport, even winning the prestigious Dakar Rally for the second time aged 55 last year.
"I have a lot of sympathy for Mick," Sainz Jr told Sky Sports News.
"I know a bit of the pressure he's going through this season and what is to be the son of (a legend) - which is a bit of a pain sometimes to be called all the time the son of, the son of, the son of.
"You want to make your own name and I'm sure he's trying to do the same. He keeps proving he's good, he keeps proving that he has his chances for Formula 1, and no one has given that to him.
"He deserves that because of his talent and the way he has developed as a driver. I wish him all the best for this test."
And Sainz's McLaren teammate Lando Norris added: "It's a cool thing, especially as he will be following in his dad's footsteps. It's a good opportunity, he's a good driver so he deserves it.
"He's a really nice character."
Speaking about his opportunity, Mick said: "I am obviously more than excited and would like to thank Ferrari for giving me this opportunity.
"I am really looking forward to what I'm sure will be a great experience."
This article first appeared on Sky Sports and was reproduced with permission