Ericsson: 'Big push needed' for 2018 seat
28 September 2017 – Sauber driver Marcus Ericsson says "a big push is needed" over the final stages of the season if he is to convince the team to extend his contract into 2018.
Ericsson has raced for Sauber since 2015, and has links with owner Longbow Finance, which purchased the Swiss outfit midway through the 2016 season.
However, his last points finish came more than two years ago, at the 2015 Italian Grand Prix, and he admits he needs to prove that he "deserves" to be in Formula 1.
"Nothing is done at the moment for me," he said of his future.
"I need to keep pushing and do good, the last couple of races now, to show that I deserve to be in F1 next year.
"It's important, even though we are struggling a bit as a team to keep up with the other guys, it's still very important races for me, so yeah, a big push is needed."
Sauber, running year-old Ferrari power units, has been cut adrift of the pack in 2017, but Ericsson says both he and the team must keep pushing.
"With the old power unit it was always going to be difficult towards the second half of the season," he added.
"And now we're really see in the last couple of races that we've been lacking quite a lot compared to the competition, so it's tough.
"But we need to still, as a team, keep pushing and keep motivated and do the best we can to maximise the performance, and we can see crazy races.
"In Singapore, it was an opportunity with a lot of things happening with the rain there, so it's these types of circumstances that can play into our hands.
"Here in Malaysia as well, the weather can really play a big part.
"We need to be there to maximise and try to take the opportunities. I thing that's the important thing to keep the motivation high and keep pushing as a team."
Ferrari-backed F2 title leader Charles Leclerc, preparing to make the first of four practice outings with the team at Sepang, is set to take one of Sauber's seats for 2018.