Sebastian Vettel has welcomed news that Mick Schumacher has signed up with Ferrari.
Schumacher, the 19-year-old son of Vettel’s mentor Michael, has joined Ferrari’s driver development ‘academy’.
“It’s great for him,” Vettel said at the race of champions event in Mexico.
“I hope he stays with us for a long time and one day he can drive with me. Or maybe I can hand over the steering wheel to him when I stop one day,” he is quoted by DPA news agency.
Ferrari’s new team boss, Mattia Binotto, says he has known Schumacher “from birth”. Mick was born in 1999, one year before Michael Schumacher won his first of five titles for Ferrari.
“I think it’s a great story,” Luigi Mazzola, an engineer who worked closely with Michael Schumacher at Ferrari, told Italy’s Autosprint.
“Mick has proved his worth so far and deserves to be in the academy. I’m glad Ferrari beat Mercedes to signing him and I think the academy is a good environment for young drivers to develop,” he added.
Schumacher will contest the Formula 2 series this year, and is slated to make his F1 test debut either for Ferrari or one of the customer teams Sauber or Haas.
“When I debuted at this event, I was paired with Michael and I remember how I looked up to him,” Vettel recalled at the race of champions event. “Today I am with his son.
“I’m sure Michael would be extremely proud of Mick.”