Mick Schumacher needs time, says Sebastian Vettel
Vettel on the prospects for Ferrari's new junior driver
By James Galloway
Last Updated: 21/01/19 2:34pm
Sebastian Vettel says new Ferrari junior Mick Schumacher can be an F1 star of the future, but has urged people to "give him time".
Ferrari formally confirmed Schumacher, the 19-year-old son of seven-time F1 champion Michael, was joining their driver academy for 2019 last week.
Schumacher won last year's European F3 series, his first single-seater title, and is racing in this year's F2 championship, the step below F1.
Vettel and Schumacher competed both alongside and against each other at the Race of Champions in Mexico over the weekend, with the pair losing finalists in the Nations Cup event before the younger German beat F1's four-time champion in the group stages of the individual competition.
Asked if Schumacher could prove a star of the future, Vettel said: "I think so. Give him time, he's under enough pressure as it is.
"Just let him do his thing, give him time and then we'll see what happens."
Cool competing with all these motorsport greats. Team Germany with Sebastian, reaching the Nations Cup final, was big fun. Going back with a big smile. Super, sich mit den Motorsport-Grössen wie Sebastian zu messen. Ich fliege mit einem grossen Lächeln zurück. #ROCMexico #SCM pic.twitter.com/CuYKOuYulU— Mick Schumacher (@SchumacherMick) January 21, 2019
Vettel brushes off 2019 'pressure'
While the unparalleled success of Schumacher's father means Mick races amid wider scrutiny than his peers, the 31-year-old Vettel has a different kind of pressure on his shoulders heading into 2019 as he aims to finally bring the world championship back to Ferrari.
Driving mistakes ultimately partly cost Vettel a shot at beating Lewis Hamilton to last year's F1 drivers' crown, but the Ferrari star says he does not feel under additional pressure to deliver this year - his fifth at Maranello.
"Same as the years before. No different," said Vettel. "The good thing getting older is you've been around for a couple of years and things don't change too much.
"Also in terms of expectation and pressure it's the same. It's the name of the game."
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