Wehrlein Finally Confirmed at Sauber
The groundwork for 2017 continues to be laid as Mercedes’ young driver Pascal Wehrlein has been confirmed as Sauber’s second driver for the upcoming Formula One season.
The German partners Marcus Ericsson at the team for his second season in F1 following his debut season with Manor in 2016.
Wehrlein impressed in the 2016 season with the back-of-the-grid team, getting into the second part of qualifying on five occasions and scoring his first points in the sport by finishing 10th at the Austrian Grand Prix. This was the team’s best result of the season.
He also beat his two teammates in qualifying over the course of the year, finishing ahead of Rio Haryanto seven times compared to the Indonesian’s five and being classified above Esteban Ocon seven times compared to two occasions when the Frenchman finished qualifying ahead.
Wehrlein expressed his delight following the confirmation that he will join fellow Mercedes-backed driver Esteban Ocon on the F1 grid.
“I am very delighted at being a part of the Sauber F1 Team for the upcoming Formula One season,” he said.
“It is a new challenge in a new team, and I am really excited and looking forward to this new adventure.
The 22-year-old mentioned that Sauber’s aims for the current season are to move up from finishing just 10th in the Constructors’ Championship in 2016 despite using a year-old Ferrari engine during the coming season.
“Our objective is to establish ourselves in the midfield and to score points on a regular basis. That being said, I will do my best to support Sauber. Now I am looking forward to meeting everyone in the team and to tackling the preparations for the 2017 season.
“I want to say a big thank you to Sauber for trusting in me and giving me this great chance. And surely, a huge thanks also goes to Mercedes for the support.”
The appointment of Wehrlein came before the announcement of Valtteri Bottas partnering Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes. Just two seats possibly remain empty on the F1 grid with the future of Manor still not confirmed.
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