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Formula 1

Schumacher wins 2020 F2 title in wild season finale

by Valentin Khorounzhiy
3 min read

Mick Schumacher will graduate to Formula 1 as the champion of its main support series FIA Formula 2, after sealing the title in the final race.

Schumacher, who will be joined by fellow rookie Nikita Mazepin in the Haas F1 2021 line-up, secured the title by 14 points, although a terrible final race meant it looked under threat until the final laps of the campaign.

The son of seven-time F1 champon Michael Schumacher, mick entered the two-race season finale at Bahrain’s Outer layout with a 14-point buffer over main title rival and fellow Ferrari junior Ilott.

Mick Schumacher, Haas F1

A collision with Roy Nissany towards the end of qualifying meant he was consigned to starting the feature race 18th, with Ilott nine places higher.

But Schumacher took a huge step towards securing the crown by charging to seventh on the road on an alternate strategy, just one place behind Ilott, and securing the two points for the fastest lap that meant his championship lead remained at 14 points.

A pair of post-race penalties for Mazepin promoted Ilott and Schumacher one place each in the Saturday classification, and therefore moved them back on the reversed Sunday grid, putting both on the second row.

Despite needing just a top-six finish to wrap up the crown, Schumacher was aggressive at the start, quickly picking off Red Bull junior Jehan Daruvala up ahead and then nearly spearing into race leader Dan Ticktum at Turn 4 after a massive lock-up that appeared to have big ramifications later on.

Though he’d avoided collecting Ticktum, Schumacher dropped behind Daruvala and nearly fell into Ilott’s clutches, though the latter himself had to soon focus on fighting off Schumacher’s Prema team-mate Robert Shwartzman.

Schumacher, meanwhile, re-passed Daruvala with a bold move around the outside of the sweeping Turn 6 right-hander on lap four, but was unable to challenge Ticktum – and fell behind Daruvala again at Turn 4 a few laps later.

Increasingly struggling for pace, he again fell back towards Ilott, who finally found a way through with an ultra-brave move down the inside of Turn 4 – and after slipping behind two more cars over the rest of the lap, Schumacher came into the pits for an emergency change of tyres.

But though he emerged in 20th and out of the points, the possibility of a championship defeat remained remote – with Ilott needing at least a top-two finish and making no progress towards the leading duo.

Eventually, an overtake on Ilott by presumptive AlphaTauri 2021 driver Yuki Tsunoda signalled the beginning of Ilott’s descent, and he dropped all the way down to P11 by the chequered flag.

Out front, Daruvala passed Ticktum into the final corner on lap 25 of 34, while Tsunoda’s move on Ticktum at the same corner on the final lap secured a 1-2 for the Carlin team.

But Schumacher’s Prema outfit had already secured the teams’ title with a race to spare.

Dec 02 : Russell to Merc, Schumacher and other driver changes
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