Former Mercedes vice-president Norbert Haug has admitted that he is impressed by Mick Schumacher, defending against some of the criticism targeted at the German regarding his journey to F1 before signing with Haas this year.

The Haas rookie usually took time before achieving success in lower categories, especially in Formula 2 and Formula 3. In F2 and F3, Schumacher struggled during his first year and then won the title in his second year, inciting criticism. Haug has come to his defense, claiming that he came to F1 on merit.

“Don’t expect him to be on a podium or be a regular points scorer, you know how difficult it is. But expect him, give him peace, to learn and to go step by step, and we will see Mick Schumacher going from good to better I’m sure,” Haug said. “I’m 100 percent sure that he has the right surrounding, that he gets advice from Sabine Kehm, from Peter Kaiser and the guys.”

Haug has worked with Mick’s father, Michael Schumacher, in the past and is hopeful that the youngster keeps working on his F1 progress and hopes Haas can properly support him in his rookie season.

“He showed some really, really impressive stuff. He showed some overtaking maneuvers. Rarely mistakes, I saw here and there yes, but his overtaking was also very impressive,” Haug admitted. “I hope Guenther Steiner is supporting him in a very good way, I think Guenther can do that, and he needs to take his time.”

Haug concluded by saying: “Mick was criticized, but look what he did in Formula 3, Formula 2. People may criticize, it took a while, whatever. At the end, he did not get a present in Formula 3. He did not get a present in Formula 2.”

Currently, Schumacher is regularly outperforming his fellow rookie teammate Nikita Mazepin in both qualifying and race itself. Haug is hopeful of Schumacher becoming a better driver in F1 through Haas.

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