By Philip Duncan, PA F1 Correspondent, Bahrain
Mick Schumacher said he is about to fulfil a lifelong ambition as he prepares to make his Formula One debut.
The 22-year-old son of seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher will compete in practice here in Bahrain on Friday ahead of his grand prix bow.
It will mark the return of the Schumacher name to the sport nine years after the German retired, and three decades since his debut at the 1991 Belgian Grand Prix.
— Haas F1 Team (@HaasF1Team) March 24, 2021
Schumacher went on to win 91 times for Benetton and Ferrari. His number of victories was surpassed by Lewis Hamilton last year.
Schumacher, 52, has not been seen in public for more than seven years after a skiing accident in the French Alps left him with devastating brain injuries. Mick was alongside him at the time of the tragic accident. His condition has subsequently been held as a closely guarded secret.
Asked to provide some insight on how his father feels about his inaugural race, Schumacher said: “Obviously, that is kind of a very private question and not a question for me to answer.
“In terms of family, I am here alone. I have my group around me, and we will take on that task of going into my first Formula One race.
“I stepped into a go-kart when I was two and a half. I tried different sports, football, ice hockey, but there was never anything that gave me the same feeling as racing and I never had the feeling that I wanted to do anything else.
“So I pursued it and we took it to a more professional level when I was 12. That is when I started racing internationally and it was a decision I took with my dad. It has been a long time coming but I have always wanted this.”
Schumacher, who won last year’s Formula Two championship, is expected to compete largely at the back of the field, with his Haas team set to be among the backmarkers.