Ferrari has signed Mick Schumacher, the 19-year-old son of legendary Formula One driver Michael Schumacher, to its driver academy.
In a statement posted on the F1 team’s official website on Saturday, Mattia Binotto – Scuderia Ferrari’s team principal – said Ferrari was signing the teenager based on his talent and “human and professional qualities.”
“For someone like me who has known him from birth, there’s no doubt that welcoming Mick into Ferrari has a special emotional meaning, but we have chosen him for his talent and the human and professional qualities that have already distinguished him despite his young age,” Binotto said.
Michael Schumacher, who turned 50 earlier this month but has not been seen in public since suffering serious head injuries in a skiing accident in 2013, won five of his record seven world titles with Ferrari.
Reigning Formula 3 champion Mick will race in Formula 2, the final feeder category before F1, with the Prema team in 2019, and as part of his Ferrari deal will drive in two tests with the Italian team this season.
He said: “I am thrilled that Ferrari has entered a partnership with me and my next future in motorsport will be in red, being part of the Ferrari Driver Academy and also of the Scuderia Ferrari Family.
“Again, this is another step forward in the right direction, and I can only profit from the immense amount of expertise bundled there.
“It is more than obvious that Ferrari has a big place in my heart since I was born and also in the hearts of our family, so I am delighted on a personal level about this opportunity as well.”
Schumacher will take part in the pre-season preparation with other FDA drivers next week.