Sidepodcast - All for F1 and F1 for all

F1 encyclopedia

Pascal Wehrlein

Formula 1 driver

Pascal Wehrlein
Credit: Mercedes AMG
Vital statistics for Pascal Wehrlein
BirthplaceSigmaringen, Germany
Born18 October 1994
F1 debutAustralian Grand Prix, 2016
Driver number94
Current teamSauber F1 Team

Pascal Wehrlein raced his way into the DTM series, participating in the German manufacturer category for two years. He linked up with the Mercedes F1 team for a test driver role at the end of 2014, participating in a post-season test in Abu Dhabi, and the following pre-season testing in Spain where he drove for both Force India and Mercedes. Ahead of the 2016 season he was hired by Manor Racing for a full time race drive and switched to Sauber for 2017.

F1 biography

Wehrlein began his racing career in Germany, working through the many karting series and championships until he could make the step up to cars. He participated in the national ADAC Formel Masters series for a couple of seasons, winning the title at his second attempt.

In 2012, Wehrlein finished second in the championship for the Formula 3 Euro Series, racing for Mücke Motorsport. The following season he moved to the DTM series driving for the same team. He picked up a couple of points in his first series, and moved to the HWA team for 2013. Pascal won his first DTM race that year, finishing the season eighth in the standings.

The link with Mercedes was confirmed with a test driver role for the F1 team, announced towards the end of the 2014 season. He participated in the post-season two day test at Abu Dhabi, setting the fastest lap in the fastest car. He was also drafted in to the pre-season test in 2015, driving for both Mercedes and Force India in Barcelona. Initially loaned out to the Force India team, Wehrlein had to be drafted back into the Mercedes on the first day of testing to deputise an unwell Lewis Hamilton.

As part of Manor Racing's power unit supply deal with Mercedes, Pascal Wehrlein was granted a full time race drive for the 2016 season with the team, who also gained access to the wind tunnel at Brackley. He was partnered by Rio Haryanto as Manor fielded another double rookie team for 2016. Midway through the year, however, Rio was replaced by Esteban Ocon and Wehrlein suddenly found himself with a bit of competition in the other car.

He was outshone by the French driver, and was overlooked for a drive with Force India for 2017 in favour of Ocon. His name was briefly in the frame for the seat at Mercedes when Nico Rosberg suddenly retired, but the top team were apparently concerned about his lack of experience. With the future of Manor looking bleak, Wehrlein earned a spot at the Sauber team, joining the Swiss squad for the 2017 season.