Schumacher secures team title in F4 season finale

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Mick Schumacher (29) battles it out with Kami Laliberte in the F4 season finale at Hockenheim, Germany. ADAC PHOTO

Mick Schumacher (29) battles it out with Kami Laliberte in the F4 season finale at Hockenheim, Germany. ADAC PHOTO

Mick Schumacher, son of Formula 1 legend Michael Schumacher, ended the ADAC Formula 4 season with a victory, denying Kami Laliberte a maiden win on the very last lap at Hockenheim and stealing the teams’ title for Prema.

Laliberte made a great start from third on the grid and took the lead from reverse-grid polesitter Kim-Luis Schramm after the latter exiting the hairpin on the opening lap. Schumacher, who started from fifth, grabbed third place from Simo Laaksonen.

Schumacher’s chance to take second from Schramm came after a safety car, brought out after Joey Mawson, the man who beat Schumacher for the season title in Race One of the weekend, was sent into the Turn 2 gravel with a broken suspension after a clash with Lirim Zendeli as they fought over eighth place.

When Schramm challenged Laliberte at the restart, Schumacher capitalized to grab second at the Mercedes Arena and very quickly caught the leader, having a look down the inside at the penultimate corner.

Another lengthy safety car period interrupted the proceedings when Oliver Soderstrom and Robin Brezina collided at the final turn; the two almost came to blows as Brezina chased the Swede out of his car and through the gravel trap, though cooler heads eventually prevailed.

After the restart, Laliberte held on until the final lap when Schumacher managed to find a way past.

That move made a huge difference in the teams’ title, meaning that Schumacher’s Prema team beat the Van Amersfoort team of Laliberte and Mawson by just 4.5 points, helped also by Schumacher’s teammate Juri Vips coming through to third from eighth on the grid.

It was the third single-seater teams’ title Prema claimed just this weekend, following GP2 and European Formula 3.

Schramm was fourth ahead of Thomas Preining, Job van Uitert and Mike Ortmann.

Eighth was enough for Nicklas Nielsen to clinch the rookie title, the Dane surviving a late-season charge from Vips.

The young Schumacher has been widely rumored to be tipped for an F1 seat next season, but so far has not confirmed any talks with teams.

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