Nico Rosberg has praised Mick Schumacher for his recent F1 "breakthrough" but has played down talk of him stepping up to a "top team" in the near future.
Schumacher recovered from a tricky start to his sophomore season with Haas to claim his maiden points finish at the British Grand Prix, following Max Verstappen over the line in eighth position after a wheel-to-wheel battle.
A week later, Schumacher added to his tally with a confident sixth-place finish in Austria, via scraps with seven-time World Champion Lewis Hamilton during the Sprint and main race.
Rosberg, who previously raced against Schumacher's father, Michael, has enjoyed watching the 23-year-old progress and is eager to see how his career continues to develop.
Rosberg gives his take on Schumacher's progress
"Mick has had difficult weeks, so we're all delighted that he's now made a nice breakthrough," Rosberg told Eurosport.
"Formula 1 is fast-moving. He had to take a lot of criticism. When I open the newspapers these days, I don't read any criticism about him at all."
As for what might have triggered this step forward, Rosberg added: "It only took one race, an eighth-place finish, a cool duel with Verstappen in Britain, and everything is forgotten again.
"That's the crazy thing about our sport, but also the nice thing for Mick.
"Psychologically, it's incredibly valuable for him, because he's now finding a positive mental trend – that carries him and that helps him in the coming races."
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Rosberg: Schumacher should take his time
But despite his high praise, Rosberg disagrees that Schumacher is ready to make the jump to a front-running team just yet.
"I don't see it that way; he still needs time in his development," added the 2016 World Champion.
"The past races have shown that. That's why it would make sense for him to take his time before targeting a top team.
"We've also seen that with George Russell, who drove at Williams for three years and was then ready for the move up to Mercedes."
Rosberg signed off: "There's no need to rush things."
Schumacher holds 15th in the standings on 12 points, four places and 10 points adrift of teammate Kevin Magnussen.
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