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Mick Schumacher

Schumacher: 'Very big positive' despite Le Mans debut retirement

Mick Schumacher completed just one stint before his car was retired by Alpine.

Schumacher Alpine
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Mick Schumacher has insisted that there is a "very big positive" to take away from his Le Mans 24 Hours debut, which ended prior to the six-hour mark. 

Competing for Alpine in the top Hypercar category, Schumacher completed a successful stint, before both Alpine cars were retired following a "suspected engine issue". 

It was a disappointing end to Schumacher's debut at the Circuit de la Sarthe, considering he had shown great speed in the #36 Alpine.

The French manufacturer was taking a step into the unknown with this year being its first in the Hypercar category in the World Endurance Championship. 

Schumacher is focusing more on the positives the team and himself can take away, rather than the fact the outfit failed to complete a third of the legendary event.

"I think we've come to a point now where we didn't quite get over the six hour mark," Schumacher told select media including RacingNews365

"We were very fast up to that point, which is a very big positive. We had an engine issue, which led us to retiring both cars, unfortunately. But again, I think not to have too much focused on the bad sides, but actually more focus on positives. 

"We've been here for many, many days, driving around this track for quite a while. And we've learned a lot about it, we've prepared it. I think we grew together as a team, we managed to put stuff behind us, in form of issues that we've encountered. 

"And then we really moved on from them to get to a point where we were fighting for pole, we were fighting for good positioning in the race, up to that point. And also, personally, my stint was very positive. So I'm really, really happy about that."

Issue needs understanding

Despite Alpine's outright pace being a huge positive for the team to take away, Schumacher has conceded that the outfit needs to understand what exactly caused the issues with the engine. 

For the same issue to cause both cars to retire, it perhaps signifies something serious with the engine, although an investigation first needs to take place before jumping to conclusions. 

Schumacher is hopeful that the French manufacturer can understand what happened to ensure it can make it to the end in the future. 

"I think now, at this point, what is left to do is just to make sure that we as team understand what happened, so that we can fix it for next time," Schumacher added. 

The Mercedes reserve driver was also quick to thank Alpine for supporting him and granting him the chance to race in the Le Mans 24 Hours, whilst he also thanked Renault and his team-mates.

He continued: "Also would like to just thank the whole Alpine group, and especially the Renault group for, obviously, getting me out here. 

"The Alpine endurance team has been so good to me, in these first three races, prepared me for this one big one. 

"And I really, really appreciate it, especially my team-mates have been day in day out whenever we were on track, but also off track really helpful and kind of trying to tell me what to manage."

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