PREMA racer Mick Schumacher says he is “confident, relaxed, and happy to be here,” ahead of the penultimate round of the season in Sakhir, with the Ferrari junior able to wrap up the Formula 2 title as early as Sunday.

Schumacher enters Round 11 as the Championship’s form driver, leading Callum Ilott in the standings by 22-points, with 10 podiums, including two victories, the second of which came last time out in Sochi, when he put in what was arguably his most complete F2 performance to take the Feature Race win.

It’s been two months since Schumacher last tasted action in F2 and the PREMA driver says he’s kept himself busy in the gym, but he admitted to finding the wait between rounds difficult.

“I have been waiting for two months for this,” he said. “I am happy to be here and excited to get started. I cannot wait for the Free Practice now and to then get into Quali and get the weekend properly started.

“I’ve spent a lot of the time working out, not just trying to retain my overall fitness, but trying to improve it. That was my main goal, to pick up a bit of weight and physically improve myself. There was a lot of focus on neck training which was the main thing that I was working on over the two months.

“I was waiting the whole time to get back into the car. It was a torture at times.”

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It was in Bahrain over 18 months ago that Schumacher made his debut in F2, finishing eighth and sixth on a satisfying maiden weekend. The German returns to the Middle East as a much more complete driver, while hailing the circuit as “perfect for us.”

“It is a great track to come to when Europe is getting colder,” he explained. “Our tyres work better here, especially with those 18-inch tyres. They usually work in the higher temperature windows, so it’s perfect for here and perfect for us.

“We will have to wait and see how things happen in practice. That will show us what we need to do with the car so that we can try and put everything together for Quali."