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Reporters – 19/05/2019

He is one of the most talked about drivers in F2 Mick Schumacher has been linked to F1 since he entered single-seater racing. Now the German believes reaching the top as his destiny, but why?

Schumacher describes F1 as his destiny

Mick Schumacher has described reaching Formula One as his destiny, as he looks to learn from his father’s legacy. Mick is the son of seven times champion Michael, and his F2 and F1 test debut in Bahrain last month.

Asked by Sky Sports, which of the current grid he most identified with, he said “I’m not really comparing myself to anyone now in F1, obviously it’s to my dad who I compare myself to. To see what we did, which steps he took and what he did different to others, and also see what positives I can take from that.”

Schumacher says that there are so many talented drivers in F1 and they would not be there otherwise, he says that it is always good to speak to each other and try to learn as much as possible. Asked if he regarded F1 as his destiny, he replied: “Yeah, it is.”

The twenty-year-old has enjoyed a breakthrough twelve months, a late surge in last years Euro F3 saw him secure a drive in F2 this season as well as being signed to Ferrari’s Academy.

Schumacher added, “It is very important to do one step after the other. We have done that up until now and F2 should now be the final step before F1.”

He has scored points in three of the four races this season and goes into this weekends Spanish Grand Prix ninth in the championship. Schumacher says that’s he is very happy to work with Prema and says that the tyres degrade a bit more.

Adding “It’s very good preparation for F1 and so I’m very grateful to be here.”

 

The deadline is getting nearer for the teams to agree to the 2021 regulations. While the deal is almost near following years of negotiations, a deal is still facing questions about the deals. Red Bull’s team principal Christian Horner says elephants remain, what are they?

Regulation deal close but elephants remain

F1 teams believe that they are drawing close to a deal on the 2021 regulations, however, they still believe that there are “a few elephants in the room.”

Teams are currently reading through and are considering the widespread changes to technical regulations, financial restrictions and governance which were outlined at a meeting in Bahrain in March. Although the end of June deadline is unlikely to be met, with a compromise deadline of October now being likely as teams believe they are nearing a deal.

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner told Motorsport.com, “There are still a few elephants in the room but yeah, it feels generally like on all front we are converging in the right direction. Hopefully, over the next few months, something can get sorted.”

Following an informal meeting in Baku, Racing Point team principal Otmar Szafnauer said that progress is being made each time the parties meet. He says that a deal is closer, and they have given feedback to the FIA as requested.

Szafnauer added, “There are still some outstanding issues on some components that will either be supplied or not and when we know more information then I think we’ll get closer to that. But mid-year, something should be published.”

Williams deputy team principal Claire Williams said her team is “really happy” with what has been proposed and would be keen to sign up now if what has been tabled so far was the final offering.

However, Mercedes F1 CEO and team principal Toto Wolff has expressed concerns that the wide-ranging changes are holding up individual elements being completed.

He said “There are so many important balls in the air, whether it’s prize fund redistribution or the cost cap, technical and sporting regulations. It is progressing slowly. We’d like to have it done sooner rather than later.”

 

Interlagos has been the home to F1 permanently since 1990, but this week the Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro said the race will move to Rio. But with the Autódromo Internacional Nelson Piquet, demolished in 2012 to make way for the Olympics can a new circuit be built by late 2020

Brazilian GP to move to Rio – Bolsonaro

Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro has announced that the countries Grand Prix will move from Sao Paulo to Rio de Janeiro in 2020. The future of the race at Interlagos has been in doubt as the contract expires next year, with Bolsonaro saying it was “no longer viable” as it relied on funding from the local government.

Speaking at a press conference, Bolsonaro confirmed a new track would be built in the Deodoro area of Rio de Janeiro and named after Brazilian three-time champion Ayrton Senna. The previous circuit, the Autódromo Internacional Nelson Piquet was demolished to make way for the 2016 Olympic Games.

However, the plans for the new circuit have not been confirmed by F1 owners Liberty Media. The president tweeted “After our victory in the elections, Formula One, which would leave Brazil, decided not only to remain, but also to build a new race track in RJ [Rio de Janeiro], which will have the name of the idol Ayrton Senna.”

“With this, thousands of jobs will be created, benefiting the economy and the population of the state.” The Brazilian president said the construction of the circuit will take between six to seven months and create as many as 7,000 new jobs.

Bolsonaro has been controversial since last years election, promising a violent crackdown on drug cartels, aligning himself with Donald Trump’s foreign policy, views on homosexuality and women, and climate change denial.

 

One circuit which will be returning, however, is the Dutch Grand Prix. As the popularity of Max Verstappen grows the return to Zandvoort has not been a surprise. But why has F1 been reborn in The Netherlands?

Dutch GP to return next season after three decades

Formula One has confirmed that its to return to the Dutch seaside. Town of Zandvoort for the first time since 1985 next season, the circuit was one of the key European races in the first four decades of the world championship.

Zandvoort is forty minutes away from the capital Amsterdam, the reason behind the circuit’s revival is the impact of Red Bull’s Max Verstappen huge following in his homeland in his first five years in F1.

In recent years, many Dutch fans have travelled to Verstappen’s second home race in Belgium and other venues across Europe.

Verstappen has become a big star of the sport, the race is expected to draw huge fans and make money unlike some European races. The news should be seen as good news as pressures grow financially on many European races.

F1 CEO Case Carey said “From the beginning of our tenure in Formula 1, we said we wanted to race in new venues, while also respecting the sport’s historic roots in Europe.”

“Next season therefore, we will have a brand new street race that will be held in the Vietnamese capital of Hanoi, as well the return to Zandvoort, after an absence of 35 years; a track that has contributed to the popularity of the sport all over the world.”

Verstappen added “It’s just an iconic, historic track. I have raced there before with F3 and it was a lot of fun. I compare the track a little bit with Suzuka because it’s designed by the same person so I can understand that the characteristics are a bit similar.”

The race joins Vietnam as a ‘new race’ on the 2020 calendar and replaces Barcelona which currently doesn’t have a contract after this season. The Vietnamese Grand Prix is expected to take place in between China and Azerbaijan with the race at Zandvoort being the opening European race.

Last year, plans for a street race in Rotterdam and the capital Amsterdam were formally abandoned. However, the rival of the Zandvoort race is a close alternative as its close to both cities.

 

Could Africa be next? The continent is the only one which doesn’t have a Grand Prix, but where. It’s a priority according to Sean Bratches should it be Morocco which last held a race in 1958, or South Africa which struggled financially post apartheid?

African race a priority

Formula One’s commercial director Sean Bratches says it’s a priority for Liberty to get a race on the African continent, saying that the Moroccan Grand Prix could be revived in Marrakech seventy years after the race was last held.

In recent years the country has hosted both Formula E and the WTTC on a street circuit. The last race on the continent, the only one without at least one Grand Prix, was held at Kyalami in South Africa in 1993. There has however been a number of attempts to revive the South African race, without success.

Speaking in London, Bratches said “We race on five continents and the last habitable continent that we don’t race in is Africa. We’ve been having very productive conversations in South Africa and to a lesser extent in Morocco about bringing a grand prix.”

“We raced there before. I’ve been told that due to political considerations historically, that ceased. We’re on it, and it’s really important to us.” He says that the region is a key market place and would make the sport truly global.

Kyalami would be seen as the best option as it is believed it would need limited upgrades. He, however, admitted he was unfamiliar with the status, suspecting it’s not a grade one circuit, but says there is a high degree of interest.

Bratches suggested that it was inevitable that public funding would be involved in a Morocco project. Adding “Wherever you go in the world [our races] are economic engines for these countries, states, cities, principalities, municipalities.”

 

And that’s all from Reporters for this week, goodbye

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Jack Fielding
Jack is responsible for the day-to-day running of Formula One Vault. He brings you all the brilliant content. Has an obsession with all things Formula One and anything with an engine.

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