It was a day to remember in Bahrain for Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow and all Formula 1 fan, shortly after nine in the morning, Mick Schumacher, son of seven times world champion, Michael, had his first drive in a Formula 1 car, the Ferrari SF90.
The Ferrari Driver Academy (FDA) student, who made his Formula 2 debut over the weekend with the Prema team, jumped in the car for an installation lap, before pitting for the usual checks. A few minutes later, despite the track being extremely dirty following the sand storm that hit the area yesterday, Mick began his first run, putting together a series of laps at a constant pace.
The other newsworthy aspect of the day was the weather, with the occasional rain shower, hardly a usual feature in this part of the world, reducing the amount of track time in the morning for the teams. Before the lunch break, the young German had completed 33 laps, the quickest in 1:32.552. In the afternoon, Schumacher and the other drivers were only able to get back on track around 5pm, given that the rain was still falling in Sakhir.
Mick completed a further 23 laps, as he gradually gained confidence in the SF90, while working on a programme including tyre and set-up work. By the end of his first day in a Formula 1 car, the youngster had run up a total of 56 laps, equivalent to 303 kilometres, one lap less than Sunday’s race distance. His best time was a 1:29.976.
For the second and final day of the Sakhir test, Sebastian Vettel will be behind the wheel for Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow. Mick Schumacher will be in action yet again, switching to the cockpit of the Alfa Romeo Racing car.
Mick Schumacher: “I really enjoyed today. It felt like home in the garage from the very first moment with a lot of people that know me since I was very young. The SF90 is incredible because of the power it has, but it is also smooth to drive, and that’s why I enjoyed myself so much.”
“I was impressed by the braking power an F1 car has. It seemed to me you could brake later and later and the car would have made the turn anyway. I would like to say thank you Ferrari for this incredible opportunity and I’m looking forward to test the Alfa Romeo tomorrow.”