M it Esteban Ocon, George Russell and the former Formula 1 driver Pascal Wehrlein, Mercedes has three young drivers up his sleeve. While one of them shines with good performances at Force India, but has to give way because of Lance Stroll, the other is still busy with Formula 2 and the third is hoping for a comeback in the premier class. Nevertheless, there are hardly any chances for the three of them to find a place to stay.
For Esteban Ocon, things initially looked good at Renault, but within 48 hours everything changed with the signing of Red Bull star Daniel Riccardo . Russell apparently does not want to have any training sessions on Friday at the moment, but instead wants to concentrate exclusively on Formula 2. And Wehrlein will run out of options at the latest when Mercedes pulls the plug in the DTM at the end of the year and he cannot find a way back into Formula 1.
Mercedes investment does not pay off
“We have three talented kids with a lack of opportunities. So we have to decide what to do in the future. A junior team is not an option. I don't want to invest 80, 90 or 100 million just to keep the young drivers, ”says Wolff. “
“ On the other hand, they are stigmatized as Mercedes drivers, which is obviously not the best position. If we can't find solutions, I'll question the junior program. I will discuss this with the board of directors and management at the end of the year. ”
According to Wolff, however, the whole system must also be in theFormula 1 will be questioned. After all, it says a lot when the premier class of motorsport relies on paid drivers again instead of the youngsters. This affects the smaller teams in particular.
Wolff brings third car into play
But the big guys are also tied. “Big teams don't take risks with young drivers. You can say: it's boring. We should put young drivers in top cars, but if you lose the drivers or constructors' championship due to the learning curve, that's not exactly great. ”
His suggestion to solve the problem:“ A third car , compulsory with a young driver for a maximum of two years. The costs wouldn't be huge, the field would be packed and we would have a fantastic show. ”