Whilst Lewis Hamilton enjoys the security of a three-year contract extension with Mercedes, Nico Rosberg is only given two years. Like a marriage certificate from Vegas or a warranty on an Alfa Romeo, F1 contracts are rarely worth the paper that they’re written on.
But Nico Rosberg will surely be the first for the chopping board should the Silver Arrows decide to chance their line-up in the near future. After all, it’s Hamilton that has secured the Driver Championships. The German will be aware of new rumors circulating about a rookie with a massive amount of promise.
Pascal Wehrlein is currently impressing at Manor. His 10th place in Austria was a highlight, showing him as a driver out-performing his car. Toto Wolff is also keen on the Mercedes academy driver, referring to him as the “little prince”. Princes eventually ascend to Kings, and this will come for Wehrlein in the coming seasons.
— Pascal Wehrlein (@PWehrlein) July 3, 2016
If he remains on the upward curve in form and performance, he will have done all that he can. Other variables count of course. If Rosberg wins the title this season, Mercedes will be unlikely to budge. But if Hamilton wins and Rosberg starts to fall into the ever-improving Red Bull, Wehrlein’s prospects of joining the top team will increase.
It’s highly unlikely that the move will happen next season, but Wehrlein is aligning himself with a stronger team for 2017 nonetheless. Despite Force India announcing their driver line-up prematurely, that higher powered Mercedes team would be ideal for the youngster. 2017 will without question be his decisive year given Rosberg’s potential departure.