STEPPING UP: Mick Schumacher, son of former F1 driver Michael Schumacher, has reportedly been signed to be a junior driver for the Mercedes F1 team. Image: AFP / Ronald Wittek
Germnay - Mick Schumacher could now be on the cusp of becoming Mercedes' next official Formula 1 junior driver.
With Esteban Ocon stepping up to Force India next year, and Pascal Wehrlein on the cusp of replacing world champion Nico Rosberg at the works team, Kolner Express newspaper suggested 17-year-old Schumacher is next in line.
Schumacher returns to Mercedes
The son of F1 legend and seven time world champion Michael, young Schumacher is poised to move into the European F3 series in 2017, which was the springboard for Max Verstappen's meteoric early F1 career.
Express has published a photo showing Mick wearing a Mercedes F1 team jacket during an end of year celebration event in Sindelfingen, Germany, near Stuttgart.
The tabloid report said: "It will soon be official, but no one wants to confirm it yet."