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Formula 1

Mick Schumacher, Haas, Formula 1 (Photo by Peter J Fox/Getty Images)

Formula One, Mick Schumacher, Haas (Image courtesy of Peter J Fox/Getty Images) If Haas parted ways with Mick Schumacher, could he end up switching from Ferrari to Red Bull for the 2023 Formula One season? With Mick Schumacher losing the apparent leverage he would have had with Haas after Alpine’s Fernando Alonso announced his switch to Aston Martin as Sebastian Vettel’s replacement for the 2023 Formula One season, Haas has suspended contract talks with the 23-year-old German. Schumacher’s contract with the American team expires at the end of the 2022 season, and it has been suggested that they may look to replace him. He recently scored his first points at Silverstone and followed that up with a career-best sixth-place finish in Austria, but he has been beaten for much of the season by teammate Kevin Magnussen, who only returned to Haas for the first time since 2020 just days before the 2022 season began. According to other reports, Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto no longer believes in Schumacher’s potential, and with Ferrari believed to have some say in who is considered for the second Haas seat, the current suspension in contract talks may lead to the departure of the son of Ferrari legend Michael Schumacher. In that case, there appears to be one ideal landing spot. Given the recent Binotto development, a Schumacher departure from Haas could lead to a Schumacher departure from Ferrari entirely. Could this lead to his acceptance into Red Bull’s development program? Such a move could keep Schumacher in Formula One with Red Bull sister team AlphaTauri, as the team has yet to confirm whether Yuki Tsunoda will return for a third season in 2023. There is also speculation that Pierre Gasly, despite being under contract with the team until next year, will not be returning in 2023. We’ve all heard how much “under contract” means these days. After this year’s ridiculous season, not just in Formula 1, it would be foolish not to compare it to the promises of a career politician seeking another term in office. After all, both McLaren and Daniel Ricciardo committed to remaining together in 2023, and yet here we are, with Alpine reserve driver Oscar Piastri denying Alpine’s press release that he will be driving for the team next year, and instead reportedly vying for Ricciardo’s seat. With a Red Bull seat out of the question for at least another few years after Sergio Perez recently extended his contract through 2024 (and, of course, reigning world champion Max Verstappen recently extended his contract through 2028), Gasly is reportedly still looking for a faster car, and the Alpine seat has been mentioned as a possibility. Regardless of whether Gasly is truly locked in for another year, AlphaTauri should unquestionably be considered one of, if not the, top landing spots for Schumacher in 2023. A two-year contract there would allow Red Bull to assess whether or not he is ready for a promotion to the top team. It’s also worth noting that Vettel has long served as a mentor to the young Schumacher, just as Michael has done for Vettel. Before Aston Martin signed Alonso, Vettel backed Schumacher to take over his seat. Is a move to Red Bull, where Vettel won four consecutive world championships to kick off the 2010s, now on the table? Red Bull currently does not have any F1-ready junior drivers in their development program, but Schumacher’s addition could change that. Despite his struggles to catch up, his track record of blossoming in year two (2018 Formula 3 European champion and 2020 Formula 2 champion after finishing 12th in the same series the previous season) suggests he could be well worth the investment of a two-year contract. Not to mention the ongoing speculation that Porsche may join Red Bull in Formula One in 2026. While the Austrian team’s long-term strategy will undoubtedly and justifiably revolve around Verstappen, could the addition of a German youngster pique the German manufacturer’s interest? It’d be difficult to say no to that.