We now know the destination of the FIA Formula 3 European Championship winner’s trophy for 2018. Second place in the second race on the final weekend of the campaign at Hockenheim was enough for Mick Schumacher to claim his first title in a junior formula series. At the end of his second season as a member of the PREMA Theodore Racing squad, driving a car powered by a Mercedes-AMG Formula 3 engine, the 19-year-old German became the new champion with a points tally of 347.
“It’s a slightly unreal feeling – I’m absolutely delighted,” said Mick. “I still can’t quite believe it. All I can say is thank you to everyone in the team for your support during this incredible season.”
Mick was undoubtedly the standout driver of the second half of the 2018 FIA Formula 3 European Championship. His first win of the campaign came as late as the 15th round contested on the legendary Spa-Francorchamps rollercoaster in the Belgian Ardennes, a circuit on which he had driven a demo lap in the 1994 Benetton B194 Formula 1 championship-winning car the year before.
After his maiden victory in the racing series at Spa, he then went on to win at least one race on each of the subsequent weekends, including Silverstone, Misano, the Nürburgring and Spielberg. The impressive statistics behind this late surge to the top are eight wins in twelve races, five of them in a row. In the context of the race weekend at the Nürburgring, Mick also put in a number of demo laps at the wheel of a Mercedes-AMG C 63 DTM race taxi.
“Congratulations to Mick on winning the FIA Formula 3 European Championship title,” said Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport Toto Wolff. “Attention was focused on the youngster right from the start, and he was under a lot of pressure. It’s not easy coping with all that, especially if the season does not get off to the best of starts, as in this case. His performance in the second half of the season was therefore all the more impressive. He has shown that he has what it takes and that he can become one of the greats in our sport. We are also obviously delighted that he registered a 500th race win for Mercedes in F3 and that he secured the title in a Mercedes-powered car.”
There was another small milestone for Mercedes power in the Saturday race on the penultimate race weekend at Spielberg when Mick secured victory number 500 for the brand. This grand total includes wins in the German, British and Australian championships, the EuroSeries, the FIA European Championship, the Formula 3 Grand Prix in Macau and the F3 Masters in Zandvoort.
The first Formula 3 engine (M271) from Mercedes-AMG was developed from the production engine of the C-class and E-class. It made its race debut on the inaugural weekend of the German Formula 3 Championship in 2002 at Hockenheim. The M271 was replaced at the start of the 2014 season by its successor, the F3 414 with four cylinders, a maximum two litres of displacement and direct fuel injection.
This title win puts Mick in among a select band of racers. Previous winners of the F3 title in cars powered by a Mercedes-AMG Formula 3 engine include Lewis Hamilton, Esteban Ocon, Paul Di Resta and Daniel Juncadella.