Mick Schumacher’s performance at ROC Sweden impresses against racing legends
- Mick Schumacher and Sebastian Vettel represented Team Germany in the 2023 Race of Champions.
- The duo fell short in the semi-finals, where the Nations Cup went to Team Norway.
- Schumacher finished the singles race in second place.
Mick Schumacher teamed up with German Sebastian Vettel in the acclaimed Race of Champions (ROC) this past weekend.
Schumacher and Vettel announced their partnership late in 2022, with the race taking place on the frozen Baltic Sea at Pite Havsbad in Sweden.
For 23-year-old Schumacher, along with Vettel and the other competitors, this was an incredibly emotional race, where his Formula 1 father Michael Schumacher has created a success story in the race over the years.
And Schumacher Jr. did not disappoint. Together with Vettel, they represented Team Germany, while in the singles division it was every driver for himself. Schumacher did well, and he was praised by all participating competitors.
?? Exciting, closely fought, funny, action packed, sideways and emotional right at the end. Today really had everything! Enjoy these top photos from a #ROCS Sweden last to remember. pic.twitter.com/m1jxrD33ix
— #ROCSweden (@RaceOfChampions) 29 January 2023
To get to the final
Schumacher saw off 18 competitors to reach the final of the single race, pitted against local hero and three-time ROC winner, Mattias Ekström. It was a hotly contested affair, with the two drivers pushing each other in the snowy conditions.
In the end, Ekström beat Schumacher two heats to nil, winning the race and tying France’s Didier Auriol and Sébastien Loeb as four-time winners.
“The Race Of Champions has meant a lot to me in my career,” Ekström exclaimed after the event.
“It’s very special to have four wins and even more special to do it in Sweden. I won my first final at the Stade de France in Paris against Sébastien Loeb; then I had two finals with Michael Schumacher in London and Beijing.”
Ekström also fought a fire inside his race car while battling Schumacher.
While impressive, the 2023 ROC winner also paid tribute to Schumacher’s father, while acknowledging the youngster is a star of the future.
“Seeing Mick in the final today was very emotional for me. This is even more special than winning. Michael has always been one of the guys I admire most in the sport for his dedication, hard work and talent,” said Ekström.
“Michael was always humble with me, and I can see that Mick is very humble as well. Mick is such a huge talent, and his time is ahead of him, so I’m looking forward to more fights in the future. I know it won’t be do it. It’ll take a long time to beat me, but against Mick I’d have no problem finishing second.”
Knocked out in the semi-finals
In the team category, however, things did not go according to plan for Team Germany. When Schumacher and Vettel entered the semi-finals, they came up short against Team All Stars, consisting of Thierry Neuville and Felipe Drugovich. Team Germany won one heat, while Team All Stars took three.
Team Finland did not do as well as they had hoped, with F1 driver Valtteri Bottas and ex-F1 driver Mika Hakkinen leaving the race early.
Father-son duo Petter and Oliver Solberg secured the ROC Nations Cup title for Team Norway, winning it for the second year in a row. The Solbergs beat Team All Stars in the final: three heats to one.