Sauber has confirmed that Pascal Wehrlein will return to his seat at this weekend’s Bahrain Formula 1 Grand Prix after missing the first two races of the 2017 season.

The German suffered a back injury in the Race of Champions earlier this year and had to miss the first pre-season test session while he recuperated.

He was back behind the wheel for the second pre-season test and drove in Friday practice at the season-opening Australian Grand Prix before suddenly pulling out, citing concerns over his fitness.

His place was taken by Ferrari reserve driver and last year’s GP2 Series runner-up Antonio Giovinazzi, who acquitted himself well and finished his debut race in twelfth.

The Sauber team was confident that Wehrlein would be fit enough to return to action at the next Grand Prix in China, until Wehrlein confirmed he would not be ready.

Giovinazzi again acted as ‘super sub’, although this time the Italian undid much of his hard work by crashing out at the same corner in both qualifying and the race.

Antonio Giovinazzi crash his Sauber C36 - 2017 Chinese Grand Prix

Giovinazzi was caught out in the tracky conditions at thie Chinese Grand Prix and crashed his Sauber early on in the race.

Images via XPB Images

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.