OCTOBER 20, 2023

Alpine says Schumacher can succeed at Le Mans

Alpine boss Bruno Famin thinks Mick Schumacher would succeed if he makes the switch from Formula 1 to Le Mans-style racing.

Mick Schumacher, Azerbaijan GP 2022
© Haas F1 Team / LAT

The Haas refugee and current Mercedes reserve tested the Renault-owned concern's new world endurance championship prototype car at Jerez this week.

It went well, Famin told Sport1. But it wasn't about pure speed, but about getting to know each other, and for him to get to know this kind of car and the team.

He said a deal isn't done yet, but there are rumours Schumacher could split his time between WEC and his F1 duties with Mercedes next year.

At the moment nothing has happened in this regard, Famin insisted. "The test was simply to get to know each other better and see whether we will continue to talk to each other.

Now we have to wait for his feedback as to whether he would be happy to do something with us. And then we can look at the exact conditions, he added - probably a reference to Toto Wolff's willingness to let the German keep his F1 role.

Famin also denied that Schumacher's inexperience in sports cars may be a problem.

I don't think so, he said. I remember Nico Hulkenberg who won as a rookie in 2015, and Alexander Wurz and others had already achieved that before, he said when asked about Schumacher's chances of winning Le Mans.

Yes, Mick has been a pure single seater driver so far, but he is a very fast and clever boy. So there's no reason why he can't be successful if something happens between us.

Meanwhile, Alpine's WEC boss Philippe Sinault admits that Schumacher's friend Esteban Ocon played a part in wooing the German to the team.

The two of them are good friends and Esteban said good things about us, he confirmed. When Mick showed interest in long-distance racing, Esteban of course said that maybe it could work with us together.