The year got off to a rocky start for Pascal Wehrlein. After a season at Manor, the 23-year-old German was looking forward to moving to Sauber in 2017 when he took part in the Race of Champions.in Miami in January. He rolled his car in one of the heats and suffered a serious back injury that forced him to pull out of the first two Grand Prix races in Australia and China.
Wehrlein was back to full fitness in time for Bahrain, and two races later he achieved an impressive eighth place in Spain. He would claim another point for the team in Azerbaijan, and he also out-qualified his team mate Marcus Ericsson on 11 occasions and finished ahead of the Swede seven times.
Unfortunately, despite being single-handedly responsible for Sauber's entire points haul in 2017, the Mercedes protégé realised early on that he was becoming the odd man out at the increasingly Ferrari-aligned team.