Mick Schumacher missed the appointment with the Saudi Grand Prix after hitting the wall in the qualifying stage on March 26. Mick lost control of the VF-22 at 274 km/h while racing Q2. His car crashed into a barrier on Turn 12. The son of legend Michael Schumacher was not thrown from the car. When the doctor approached, Mick was awake and answering brain tests normally.
Schumacher’s son hospitalized
The 23-year-old racer was then taken to an ambulance to be hospitalized. After a few hours of examination, he was allowed to leave the hospital and return to the hotel. On Twitter , Mick announced: “Hi everyone, I just wanted to say everything is fine. Thanks for the messages asking. The car feels good, Haas. We will come back stronger.” .
With Mick’s absence, the Haas team will only have one car driven by driver Kevin Magnussen in the main race on March 27, starting in 10th place. However, team leader Guenther Steiner said this is not big problem.
“We decided not to register Mick’s car for the main race. Kevin didn’t drive too much in the test race yesterday but did well to make it to the third quarter. His last race was not what I expected but I do. I think it’s the result of the limited practice time on the track. We’re still happy with the 10th place,” Steiner told Sky Sports .
The Saudi Arabia GP is the second stage of the F1 2022 season. Red Bull driver Sergio Perez won the pole in the qualifying stage while teammate – defending champion Max Verstappen only finished fourth. Starting right after Perez will be the Ferrari duo Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz.
The opening leg of the Bahrain GP season on March 20 saw Ferrari win big when Leclerc and Sainz took the top two places, respectively.
Ferrari wins big at Bahrain GP
Ferrari succeeded on the Sakhir track when Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz respectively shared the first two places, and Max Verstappen had to give up on March 20.
The race to stage victory took place only between Leclerc and Verstappen, as previously predicted. The most dramatic moment of the leg came in rounds 17-19, when Verstappen in P2 three times chose the inner lane on Turn 1 to overtake Leclerc. The first two times he succeeded, but was overtaken again on Turn 4. On the third time, Verstappen made a mistake and missed the opportunity.
Red Bull also had a disaster in the final rounds, when the engine system of the RB18 car had problems that caused Verstappen and Sergio Perez to give up, respectively . This helps Ferrari’s two F1-75s comfortably reach the finish line first. This is the first time two Ferraris have finished first, since the Singapore stage in 2019.
“Wonderful,” Leclerc shouted over the radio shortly after finishing. “This is how we should start the season. P1 and P2 guys. Fighting.”
Because two Red Bull drivers had to give up, Lewis Hamilton was able to climb to the podium. His Mercedes teammate George Russell finished fourth. Kevin Magnussen scored the first points for Haas since 2020, when he finished fifth. The remaining positions in the group have points respectively belonging to Valtteri Bottas, Esteban Ocon, Yuki Tsunoda, Fernando Alonso and Chinese rookie Zhou Guanyu (Zhou Guan Yu).
Fans were concerned that Leclerc and Verstappen’s “bloody” style would cause a collision in the start, but that did not happen. Leclerc picked lanes while entering Turn 1 at low speed, and secured the lead.
Drama came again from the latter group, as Lewis Hamilton and Kevin Magnussen overtook Sergio Perez. Russell also advanced two places to P7, while Valtteri Bottas started poorly and fell several places. Mick Schumacher collided with Esteban Ocon causing the VF-22 to spin around, but the son of legend Michael Schumacher remained firmly on the track. In the last group, two McLaren drivers Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo fell behind.
The fight in the first group was not much change, but after 11 laps, Leclerc created a distance of 3.1 seconds with Verstappen. “My tires have no friction,” the Dutch driver said over the radio.
After 12 laps, Hamilton decided to venture into the pit to change hard tires, with the intention of racing to the end of the race. But he didn’t heat up the tires enough to create friction, so he nearly crashed on Turn 1. “This tire has no grip at all,” he said as he was overtaken by two other cars. After a few laps, Hamilton got P5 back.
In the 15th round, Verstappen and Sainz went to change the soft tyres, then returned to P2 and P3 respectively. A round later, Leclerc and Perez respectively changed the soft and normal tires. Since then, Verstappen started attacking.
In two consecutive laps, Verstappen overcame Leclerc on Turn 1, but the Monaco driver claimed a place on Turn 4. In lap 19, Verstappen again chose the inner lane to pass, but this time he braked too hard, causes the tire to jam and show a flat wear.
Red Bull had to direct Verstappen to slow down, to cool the brakes. Flat wear on the front right tire of the RB18 also prevented the defending champion from continuing to try to overtake.
Unable to surpass Leclerc, Verstappen decided to use the “undercut” strategy in round 31 . He entered the pit first and changed the normal tire, then went full speed on the next lap. But Leclerc also had no problem changing the tire in the next round, so he left the pit right in front of Verstappen.
The Dutch driver was furious because the second “undercut” failed, but the Ferrari pit team changed tires even faster than Red Bull. “I’ve listened to Verstappen’s radio for years and never seen him as angry as he is right now,” reporter Adam Cooper said.
By lap 34, Verstappen received instructions from Red Bull that: “Relax to race”. But he and Perez, in turn, failed to pass two Ferraris. By lap 45, Red Bull put both drivers into the pit for the third time to change the soft tyres. They have nothing to lose, because the distance to Hamilton’s P5 position is too far.
Ferrari responded by bringing in Sainz for a soft tire change, and getting back on track just above Perez. And Leclerc continued to use normal tires, with a distance of more than 30 seconds compared to Verstappen.
Leclerc was lucky when Pierre Gasly’s AT03 suddenly caught fire on the track, forcing the safety car to appear. At that time, the new Monaco driver entered the pit, and still kept P1. When the race returned, the race was only 7 laps. Two Red Bull drivers in turn gave up and gave the victory to Ferrari. The joy multiplied for the Italian team when Leclerc won the fastest lap (fastest-lap).
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