Some say that a famous name will get you far in Formula 1. Mick Schumacher might beg to differ.

Chewed up and spat out of Formula 1 after just two seasons and at just 23 years old, Mick may even have hoped that the Schumacher name might have been more influential in the longevity of his career.

Instead he faces an uncertain future — at least one year on the sidelines and unlikely odds of reappearing on the Formula 1 grid.

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Nico Hulkenberg will return to Formula 1 next season with the Haas team, ousting Mick Schumacher from the sport.

The 35-year-old German last raced in F1 in 2019 for Renault, and despite not racing in any category since then, he said he felt like he’d “never really left”.

“I’m very happy to move into a full-time race seat with Haas F1 Team in 2023,” he said. “I’m excited to have the opportunity to do what I love the most again and want to thank Gene Haas and Guenther Steiner for their trust.

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Kevin Magnussen took a sensational maiden Formula 1 pole position for himself and his Haas team at the Sao Paulo Grand Prix, with a perfectly timed qualifying lap on slicks before rain soaked the Interlagos circuit.

Q3 started with rain looming on the radar, and nine of the 10 cars in the shootout lined up at pit exit on the soft tire to bank a lap before the heavens opened.

Magnussen was the first in the queue to take to the damp track in the drizzle, and his position on track paid dividends as conditions worsened, putting him on provisional pole with a 0.203s margin ahead of Red Bull’s Max Verstappen.

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Haas F1 Team driver Kevin Magnussen joins hosts Matt Clayton and Michael Lamonato to talk about the physical challenges of his surprise return to the F1 grid, why he came back to a team that sacked him, memories of finishing second on debut in Melbourne eight years ago and the revised expectations for Haas after such a strong start to 2022, while we look ahead to this weekend’s return of F1 to Melbourne with Australian Grand Prix Corporation CEO, Andrew Westacott.

When Kevin Magnussen bowed out of Formula 1 at the end of 2020, he seemed almost happy to be done with the sport.

The season had delivered him a career-worst result of a solitary point, though the paltry return wasn’t for a lack of trying. Haas was in steep decline and struggling to keep its head above water, and Magnussen and teammate Romain Grosjean extracted just one points finish each over 17 rounds.

In the end Haas dismissed both its drivers in favour of Mick Schumacher and Nikita Mazepin, two rookies who could inject funding into the team.

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Nikita Mazepin says he’s lost “trust” in his former Haas Formula 1 team after it sacked him without warning in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The axed star, who was replaced by former Haas driver Kevin Magnussen, also said he intends to set up a foundation to help Russian athletes banned from international competition due to the war.

Nikita and his father, Dmitry Mazepin, were subsequently specifically named and added to a European Union sanctions blacklist overnight owing to their close ties to Vladimir Putin.

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For a driver with 22 starts, no points and a highest finish of 14th to his name, Nikita Mazepin has attracted an extraordinary amount of attention in his single year in Formula 1.

And a single year is almost certainly all he’s likely to get after he was summarily sacked by Haas on Saturday.

Sanctions levied against Russia for its invasion of Ukraine forced the issue, and a growing number of national motorsport bodies, including Motorsport Australia, have moved to ban Russian licence-holders.

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Nikita Mazepin’s chances of clinging to his Formula 1 seat have received a boost after the FIA declined to ban Russians from international motorsport despite IOC recommendations.

Mazepin will be allowed to race under the FIA flag subject to “adherence to the FIA’s principles of peace and political neutrality”. The FIA also confirmed the Russian Grand Prix has been cancelled for 2022 for reasons of “force majeure”.

But the Haas driver’s future in the sport is far from certain. His position in the team dependent on the backing of Russian chemicals company Uralkali, in which his father, Dmitry, is a shareholder. Dimity Mazepin has ties to Russian president Vladimir Putin, whose invasion of Ukraine is now in its seventh day.

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Haas F1® team principal Guenther Steiner reflects on the American team’s debut in Australia in 2016, explains why he’s looking ahead to the 2022 Formula 1® regulation changes, assesses rookie drivers Mick Schumacher and Nikita Mazepin, and talks about his increased profile from the ‘Formula 1: Drive To Survive’ Netflix series.

SEN Drive, 5 January: Australian Grand Prix Postponement

Romain Grosjean’s survival from his horror fireball smash in Bahrain is all down to motorsport’s pursuit of excellence.

Lewis Hamilton has controlled the Bahrain Grand Prix after a fireball smash had Romain Grosjean sent to hospital and the race suspended on lap one.

Grosjean’s Haas car left the track at around 240 kilometres per hour after tangling with Daniil Kvyat at turn three and slammed into the steel barriers, breaking in two.

The front section of the car wedged itself among the rails and burst into flames, trapping the Frenchman inside for 20 seconds until he could undo his belts and climb from the burning wreckage.

Guenther Steiner
Guenther Steiner was found to have brought the sport into disrepute for his Russian Grand Prix comments.
Romain Grosjean's technical work has helped him secure another year with Haas.
Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen race wheel-to-wheel on track at Hockenheim.
Haas principal Guenther Steiner could axe one of his drivers over their on-track battles.
Romain Grosjean on the Haas pit wall.
The GPDA says it has the answers to F1's woes.
William Storey
Rich Energy is the story that keeps on giving.
Whatever’s causing the problem, it’s clear unlocking the tyres is key to unlocking the Haas VF-19’s potential — just don’t blame Pirelli.