Taking a break in 2023 wouldn’t be such a bad thing for Mick Schumacher as the German struggles to keep his place at Haas.

A vacation in 2023 wouldn’t be “so bad” for Mick Schumacher as the German fights to keep his place Haas.

Team owner Gene Haas warned ahead of the US Grand Prix that the 23-year-old, who cost the team “a fortune” in a crash, needed more “points” to earn a new contract.

And so far Kevin Magnussen scored points while Schumacher did not.

“I think we had some good moments today,” he said afterwards, insisting he lost the pace when the car was damaged.

Asked if the latest zero-points result could be the death knell for his 2023 hopes, Schumacher told Sky Deutschland: “I think the team knows and has seen what I can do.

“Everyone there could see we were on course for the points, so it’s a shame we couldn’t get them.

“But the pace is there.”

Team boss Gunter Steiner even issued a mild rebuke to Magnussen in Austin after the signed-and-sealed 2023 Haas driver urged the team to re-sign Schumacher.

“I think I’ve had a lot of advice from people about who should drive, like obviously Kevin, but that’s what he thinks,” he said.

“At the end of the day, I have to take care of our team in the future, and then we’ll get the driver we want in the car.”

So, with Williams eyeing rookie Logan Sargeant until 2023, Schumacher’s options now lie between Haas, a back-up role or coming off sabbatical.

“I think a year off wouldn’t be too bad for a guy like him,” said the former F1 driver Christian Danner.

“He is still so young that he can easily resume his Formula 1 career afterwards,” he told Sport1.

Well-known German journalist Ralf Bach, however, disagrees.

“For Mick, I think it all comes down to surviving 2023,” he said. “Because as I see it, his future is with Audi.

“They want him, and negotiations have already taken place. I know for sure that negotiations are going on.”

Audi will enter Formula 1 in 2026, almost certainly in partnership with Sauber – now known as Alfa Romeo.

When asked about Schumacher securing a seat at Audi, the German automaker’s F1 project manager Adam Baker said: “To be honest, a German driver would be interesting for us.

“But the final decision will be based on performance, not nationality.”

Danner, however, believes Schumacher’s time at Haas could damage his future F1 prospects.

“There are a lot of problems for him in this environment,” he said. “It’s an atmosphere where it becomes very, very difficult when they think you’re not in the best shape.”

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