Mick Schumacher, the 21-year-old son of seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher, improved his hopes of landing a seat in Formula One next year when he won the Sochi Formula Two feature race from third on the grid on Saturday.
His victory extended his lead in the F2 drivers’ title race ahead of British driver Callum Ilott and endorsed Schumacher junior’s position as a contender to claim a seat with Alfa Romeo next season.
“The race could not have gone better. The start was good, the pit stop very fast, the balance of the car, excellent,” said Schumacher, who also claimed a F2 win at Monza three weeks ago.
“We now have consistency, we’re getting podiums and lots of points - that’s how you win championships in the end.
“We have worked hard as a team and improved, and this is now paying off.”
The Swiss-based Alfa Romeo team is expected to give Schumacher a practice run in one of their cars at next month’s Eifel Grand Prix at the Nurburgring before confirming its 2021 line-up.
If he impresses he could be in the running for Antonio Giovinazzi’s seat.
The Italian’s future remains undecided and he may have to compete not only with Schumacher but several other Ferrari academy proteges as well as the experienced Mexican Sergio Perez and German Nico Hulkenberg.
Whoever is picked will be teammate to Kimi Raikkonen. The 40-year-old 2007 champion is reported to have agreed to re-sign for another season by Swiss news outlet Blick on Saturday.
Sunday’s Russian race will be Raikkonen’s 322nd Grand Prix, drawing him level with the record held by Brazilian Rubens Barrichello.
While the Finn targets that significant milestone, Lewis Hamilton has his first tilt at equalling Michael Schumacher’s record of 91 career Grand Prix wins on Sunday.
Mick Schumacher suggested on Friday that his family would welcome Hamilton’s achievement, saying “dad used to say records are there to be broken”.
Michael Schumacher has not been seen in public since suffering head injuries during a skiing accident in December 2013.