Twenty-year-old Pascal Wehrlein, will test for the Sahara Force India team at this weeks Formula 1 test at the Circuit de Catalunya.
The DTM ace, the youngest ever race winner in series history, will also participate in two in-season tests for the Formula 1 team this year, as well as remaining as the official reserve driver for Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS.
Wehrlein will open up the testing for Force India this week on Thursday using their 2014 car, the VJM07, and the teams’ focus will be on tyre testing with their 2015 car, the VJM08, still not ready to start testing. The German is delighted to have been given the opportunity to test with the team, having run a day at the end-of-season Abu Dhabi tests in 2014 with Mercedes.
“I am very happy that Sahara Force India has offered me the opportunity to drive their car for two days at the official test in Barcelona and that Mercedes-Benz has supported me to make this happen,” said an excited Wehrlein. “As a young driver, any time you can spend in the car is extremely important and you can learn a lot.
“I know the simulator already, but I don’t have much experience on the track. My first goal in Spain will be to do a great job together with the team, to learn as much as possible and to give good feedback to the engineers.
“I have already driven the world champion Mercedes-Benz F1 W05 Hybrid and the comparison with Sahara Force India will be very exciting for me: the way the team works, how they improve the car and handle problems – all this will help me to gain experience and to reach the next level in my development.
“Everybody knows that lap times only play a secondary role when you’re testing. But of course I want to be as competitive as possible. Sahara Force India performed very strongly last season and I hope I will be able to make a small contribution to push the team forward and be ready for the opening race in Melbourne.”
Wehrlein will test with the team on Thursday and Saturday, with regular drivers Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg having a day in the VJM07 each, the Mexican taking over on Friday, with the German concluding the test on Sunday.
The team are hopeful of being able to introduce their VJM08 for the final test at the same circuit the following week.