Mercedes talking to multiple teams for Wehrlein, Ocon

Mercedes is talking to multiple teams about the F1 futures of Pascal Wehrlein and Esteban Ocon, according to Toto Wolff.

The two Mercedes youngsters are currently racing for Manor, with Wehrlein having been there for the whole season and Ocon getting a race seat from the Belgian Grand Prix onwards as a replacement for Rio Haryanto. With the pair being compared in similar machinery at present, Wolff says he is still waiting to make a final decision on where each driver will be next season.

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“It’s still pretty much coming together,” Wolff said. “It’s a very interesting competition they are having within Manor and we are still evaluating the future and talking with a couple of teams, and working together for next year, but it’s still very early days.”

Both drivers have been linked with the newly vacant seat at Force India, but Ocon is also believed to be in line for a drive at Renault. Though a French driver is an obvious fit for the team, Renault managing director Cyril Abiteboul says the priority is to get a driver who performs on track.

“Frankly, nationality, we don’t want to start having some tactics in terms of nationality,” Abiteboul said. “We want him to be fast, we want him to make some contribution to the team, just like Nico will be doing with his experience.

“We know he had a strong spirit and can contribute to get the team together, so the second driver should be doing exactly the same. We have a bit of time to make the decision. We have a couple of options. People are interested and attracted by our project and that’s what is satisfying.”

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