DTM champion Pascal Wehrlein expects to know his F1 future soon

New DTM champion Pascal Wehrlein expects to learn if he will graduate to Formula 1 in 2016 in the "next two or three weeks"

DTM champion Pascal Wehrlein expects to know his F1 future soon

New DTM champion Pascal Wehrlein expects to learn if he will graduate to Formula 1 in 2016 in the "next two or three weeks".

The Mercedes reserve became the youngest DTM champion last weekend at Hockenheim, and has been linked with a move to F1 next year.

He is among the candidates to join Manor, which will start using Mercedes engines in 2016.

"I don't know at the moment," the 21-year-old said of his future.

"We will celebrate our DTM title and then over the next two or three weeks, we'll decide."

While Wehrlein has often spoken about his "dream" of racing in F1 and tested with Mercedes and customer Force India over the last 14 months, his future is not clear cut.

He is not attached to Manor's new power unit supply deal with the German manufacturer, and drivers with commercial backing may prove more appealing to the small team.

Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff told Germany's Bild it would not push to get Wehrlein a place in F1 "at any price".

Another consideration is Mercedes' fortunes in its domestic programme.

Wehrlein was one of only two Mercedes DTM race winners in 2015, former Red Bull junior Robert Wickens the other, and he was by far its most consistent driver.

Behind Wehrlein, ex-F1 driver Paul di Resta was the next Mercedes driver in the standings, in eighth.

Rather than rush Wehrlein into Manor in 2016, one mooted scenario would be to replicate di Resta's path to Formula 1.

That could allow Wehrlein to combine a Friday role with Force India - currently without a reserve/third driver - with a DTM title defence and a view towards securing a seat on the 2017 F1 grid.

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