Pascal Wehrlein has confirmed his absence from the opening pre-season test as he has yet to recover a back injury sustained in a crash in January.
Wehrlein hit the barriers when he crashed at the Race of Champions in Miami, reportedly injuring his neck.
The German, though, has revealed that it was in fact his back, and not his neck, that was injured.
As a result of the injury he will not take part in the first of the two pre-season tests, which would have been his first outing as a Sauber driver.
“I have to skip the first winter test due to medical advice because of a back issue,” Wehrlein announced on social media.
“I feel sorry for the team but we’ll come back stronger.”
According to reports, Sauber are set to call up Ferrari third driver Antonio Giovinazzi to replace Wehrlein at the Circuit de Catalunya.