Pascal Wehrlein: 'Formula 1 set for five second boost in 2017'

Pascal Wehrlein arrives in the paddock before final practice for the Formula 1 Grand Prix of Singapore at Marina Bay Street Circuit on September 19, 2015
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Pascal Wehrlein thinks that predictions of a five second per lap boost for F1 next year could be right.

Pascal Wehrlein has said that he thinks predictions of a five second per lap boost for Formula 1 next year could be right.

The German is among only a handful of drivers who have been taking part in Pirelli's testing of the bigger and wider slicks next year.

Wehrlein's latest running took place in less than ideal weather in Barcelona, but he said afterwards: "I can't say much, but yes - the tyres are faster."

Although racing for Manor, Wehrlein remains closely involved with Mercedes, who along with Ferrari and Red Bull have modified 2015-spec cars to assist with Pirelli's 2017 testing.

Along with the bigger tyres, F1 cars are also getting substantially more downforce for next year, leading Wehrlein to predict: "Five seconds per lap [faster] is quite realistic.

"Whether it is six seconds or four, we will have to see, but it will be much faster. On top of that, the wide tyres look much better."

Some figures, including Pirelli's Paul Hembery and Sebastian Vettel, have said that the 2017 improvement is hard to quantify, particularly because the 2015 test cars are not yet producing enough downforce.

Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes celebrates his win on the podium during the Canadian Formula One Grand Prix at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve on June 12, 2016
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TeamPoints
1Mercedes161
2Ferrari153
3Red Bull72
4Force India53
5Toro Rosso21
6Williams-Mercedes18
7Renault14
8Haas9
9Sauber4
10McLaren0
DriversTeamPoints
1Sebastian VettelFerrari104
2Lewis HamiltonMercedes98
3Valtteri BottasMercedes63
4Kimi RaikkonenFerrari49
5Daniel RicciardoRed Bull37
6Max VerstappenRed Bull35
7Sergio PerezForce India34
8Esteban OconForce India19
9Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes18
10Carlos SainzToro Rosso17
11Nico HulkenbergRenault14
12Romain GrosjeanHaas5
13Kevin MagnussenHaas4
14Pascal WehrleinSauber4
15Daniil KvyatToro Rosso4
16Lance StrollWilliams-Mercedes0
17Marcus EricssonSauber0
18Jolyon PalmerRenault0
19Stoffel VandoorneMcLaren0
20Fernando AlonsoMcLaren0
21Antonio GiovinazziSauber0