Pascal Wehrlein and Mercedes/HWA failed to succeed in a conclusion over “sure pre-requisites” required to finish his contract early and permit his System E debut in 2018, says Ulrich Fritz.
Wehrlein will depart the Mercedes motorsport household on the finish of 2018, however was introduced as a Mahindra Racing ABB FIA FE driver for the 2018/19 championship on the eve of pre-season testing and accomplished the three-day check at Valencia.
However he was changed by Felix Rosenqvist for final weekend’s season 5 opener in Advert Diriyah, as Wehrlein’s Mercedes contract doesn’t finish till December 31.
He’ll make his Mahindra debut on the second spherical of the FE season in Marrakech.
When requested to make clear the scenario, HWA FE group principal Fritz advised Motorsport.com: “We didn’t need to stand in Pascal’s method in any respect – that’s why we agreed to the [Valencia] check.
“However we additionally at all times mentioned that sure pre-requisites would should be fulfilled to launch him from his present contract.
“There have been negotiations, however we didn’t lastly come to a conclusion.
“Why that is or why this isn’t I don’t need to go into element as a result of I don’t like to clean soiled laundry that should keep between the events in public.
“Nevertheless, I can guarantee you we didn’t need to deliberately stand in his method. [The talks were] with Pascal – I don’t have a relationship with Mahindra.
“That’s why we allowed the check – we have been shocked to learn that he was straight introduced as a driver. That was not one thing we knew earlier than.
“However perhaps it’s solely a misunderstanding, I don’t need to blame individuals for one thing, however the scenario is like it’s.”
Mahindra group boss Dilbagh Gill had “no remark” to make to Motorsport.com concerning Wehrlein’s Mercedes contract.
Fritz had beforehand defined that Wehrlein and Mercedes had mentioned him making the swap to FE with HWA, however talks didn’t progress additional because the ex-Manor and Sauber System 1 driver is centered on making a return to grand prix racing.
The HWA CEO said that the present scenario was “under no circumstances” associated to that improvement.
“To be trustworthy, there was these talks in the summertime,” Fritz defined. “I had a sense that Pascal was not likely eager on doing it and subsequently for us it was a chapter which was closed fairly early.
“That’s what I actually need to emphasise, it’s not that we need to deliberately hold him again or do one thing that harms his profession as a result of he didn’t need to do it at that time of time.
“I did perceive his choice at that time of time. It isn’t that he had a proposal – that’s one thing which I additionally learn on the web – it was not the case.
“There have been early talks – he did a check with a Gen1 automobile with Venturi, he did an OK efficiency there and it didn’t go any additional.
“However this example with Mahindra doesn’t have something to do with it.”