Lucas Auer's F1 hopes remain intact despite Force India's driver renewal

Despite Force India retaining both Sergio Perez and Esteban Ocon for 2018, Lucas Auer believes that this decision will not impact his immediate future in motorsport.

Auer, who is the nephew of Gerhard Berger, competes in the DTM series for Mercedes and currently lies in second place in the Drivers' Championship, nine points behind Mattias Ekström who currently leads.

Courtesy of common sponsorship with BWT, Auer was handed a test drive with Force India at F1's in-season test in Hungary last month, and although he impressed, was not a candidate for a 2018 drive with the Silverstone-based squad.

"The test was a huge trust in me and I am still in contact, but my focus is on the DTM," Auer told Servus TV.

Gerhard Berger was also impressed with his 23 year old nephew's performance, and believes that he still has a chance to race in F1, despite Force India retaining Perez and Ocon for next season: "Luki still has chances," he said.

"Force India has an eye on him. You can already see that because he was invited to the test without my help -- he really worked it out for himself.

"He has a very good chance of winning the DTM [title].

"And with his test, he has shown that coming into Formula 1 is absolutely realistic," he added.