Phillip Horton  |    |   0  |  17 February 2017

Injured Pascal Wehrlein to skip opening pre-season test

Sauber’s Pascal Wehrlein will miss the opening pre-season test at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya due to a lingering back complaint.

Mercedes-backed Wehrlein joined Sauber after spending his rookie year with Manor, but suffered an accident during the Race of Champions in Miami in January, when he rolled his Polaris Slingshot machine after the finish line.

Wehrlein was able to walk away from the incident but sat out the remainder of the friendly competition before Sauber confirmed earlier this month that the German’s medical assessments were still ongoing.

Wehrlein has now announced that he will not participate in the opening test, which takes place from February 27 to March 2.

“I have to skip the first winter test due to medical advice because of a back issue,” said Wehrlein on Twitter.

“I feel sorry for the team but we'll come back stronger!”

A Sauber spokesperson told Motorsport Week that a replacement for Wehrlein will be announced "in due time."

The second test, at the same location, takes place from March 7 to March 10.

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