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Haas F1 Team

Haas insist Mazepin and Schumacher have 'equal status'

Haas will not place any team orders on Nikita Mazepin and Mick Schumacher when they head into their sophomore F1 seasons, leaving the pair to battle it out on track.

Mazepin Schumacher Hamilton Qatar
To news overview © Haas

Haas team boss Guenther Steiner has made clear that there will be no "number one or number two" driver at the outfit heading into the 2022 season, as Nikita Mazepin and Mick Schumacher prepare for a second campaign as teammates.

With Haas deciding not to develop their 2021 car and instead focus fully on the 2022 rules reset, Mazepin and Schumacher spent the majority of their rookie seasons running at the back of the pack, battling only each other.

It was a particularly one-sided affair, as former F2 champion Schumacher held an average qualifying advantage of 0.915s over Mazepin, along with a head-to-head of 16-6 in the races, only finishing behind three times when both drivers finished.

No number one driver at Haas

As the team aim to return to the points in 2022 with their newly-launched car, Steiner insists both drivers will be given equal opportunity to lead Haas' charge, rather than one being favoured over the other.

"Both drivers are equal in our team; they've got equal status contracts, [so] there will be no leader of the team," Steiner told media, including RacingNews365.com.

"The leader will [at] each race come out [through] who is doing a better job in practice and qualifying, and when you do that, in the race obviously you start in front and then you are automatically in a better position.

"But the starting point every weekend is the same. There will be no number one or number two driver."

What next for Mazepin and Schumacher?

There were a number of flashpoints between Mazepin - whose dad runs the company that acts as Haas' title sponsor - and Schumacher during the 2021 season, with tensions rising on and off the track.

However, Steiner recently explained in an exclusive interview with RacingNews365.com that he has seen an improvement in Mazepin and Schumacher's relationship and highlighted "respect" between them.

Asked specifically what he is hoping for from his drivers during the upcoming campaign, Steiner said: "Our expectation is just to be able to fight for points, to fight with the other drivers which are in Formula 1.

"They had their rookie year [and] we always were very open that the expectations last year were not high, but it gave them the opportunity to learn [and] establish themselves in Formula 1.

"Now it's the year we have to prove that we're on the right track with the drivers."

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