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Mercedes’ Wehrlein to drive 2014 Force India in Barcelona

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Mercedes’ Wehrlein to drive 2014 Force India in Barcelona
Feb 18, 2015, 11:28 AM

Mercedes have confirmed that its reserve driver Pascal Wehrlein will drive Force India’s 2014 car for two days of this week’s four-day test in ...

Mercedes have confirmed that its reserve driver Pascal Wehrlein will drive Force India’s 2014 car for two days of this week’s four-day test in Barcelona, with race drivers Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez restricted to a day each behind the wheel of the VJM07.

Force India’s pre-season preparations have suffered a series of setbacks with the team missing the first test in Jerez and debate still surrounding the presence of the team’s new car, the VJM08, at the final test in Barcelona next week. Wehrlein’s two-day test with the team this week has been posited as a method of offsetting engine costs from supplier Mercedes.

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After his Barcelona outing Wehrlein will continue to work with Force India, with the German DTM racer set to participate in the two in-season tests scheduled for this season.

"This is a great opportunity for Pascal to develop his Formula One knowledge with our friends at Force India and shows the good working relationship within the Mercedes-Benz family,” said Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff.

Wehrlein said: “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.

“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," he added. "Force India delivered a very strong performance in the 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.”

Force India, meanwhile, revealed that its running with the VJM07 will largely focus on evaluation of 2015’s Pirelli tyres. Wehrlein will drive the first two days of the test, with Perez taking over on Saturday and Hulkenberg driving on Sunday.
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