Ferrari F1 engineer Clear to get expanded role with Schumacher

Ferrari looks set to expand Jock Clear’s role as a Formula 1 driver coach to include its other juniors, including Haas rookie Mick Schumacher.

The British engineer, who is best known for his supporting role in Jacques Villeneuve’s 1997 world title with Williams, has played a senior trackside engineering role at Ferrari since he joined the team from Mercedes in 2015.

From the start of Charles Leclerc’s first season with the team in 2019, Clear has worked as a driver coach for the Monegasque, acting as a useful interface between the Alfa Romeo graduate and the Maranello team’s engineers as they adapted to working with each other.

Following recent discussions, Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto has revealed that Clear’s role could widen to involve helping Ferrari’s other junior drivers – including Schumacher, F2 race winner Robert Shwartzman and newly-announced test driver Callum Ilott.

“Jock Clear is a great person and great professional, and has been in Ferrari many years,” said Binotto.

“We had some chats with Jock in the past weeks and we would like to develop him even more as a driver coach, not only for Charles but looking ahead at the future to our own young driver line-up we have got at the Ferrari Driver Academy (FDA).

“Next year we’ve got Mick in Haas starting his experience in F1, but we’ve got still young drivers competing in F2 – like for example Robert Shwartzman. And there is Callum Ilott, who will be our test driver next year, [who] will do simulator, and will do free practices.

“So the role of Jock will be to assist all these drivers to develop themselves as drivers, and try to exploit the most of their potential.”

Binotto said that the driver coach role was an important one in terms of helping evaluate on-track performances and find areas where improvements can be made.

“He supports the drivers in order to perform and drive to their best,” explained Binotto.

“He looks at their lines, looks at the way they are braking through the corner, accelerating, and managing tyres.

“They are there to support the race engineers, performance engineers and drivers, to make sure that the driver is developing well.”

Schumacher is stepping up to Haas next season following his title-winning campaign with Prema in F2, in which he defeated UNI-Virtuosi driver Ilott.

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