Sergey Sirotkin has played down speculation he is definitely set to return to prominence in formula one next year. When still a teenager, the Russian leapt into the headlines in 2013 when he was part of a proposed buyout deal at Sauber.
The deal never happened, but in 2015 Sirotkin - now 20 - moved into the F1 feeder series GP2 and finished the championship in a credible third place. He is now tipped to switch to the title-winning ART team for 2016.
"I am glad that I will continue to race in GP2," he told Russia's Sportbox. "Regarding ART, there is nothing to announce as negotiations are underway.
"All I can say is that next season my goal is the title," Sirotkin announced. "After third place there can be nothing else."
Recently, the former manager of Vitaly Petrov, Oksana Kosachenko, revealed that another Russian will be in the F1 paddock next year, possibly as a test driver.
"We have a definite offer, and not just one," Sirotkin said when asked about the comments. "But we all understand what it rests upon. Therefore, if we find the required financial support, maybe I'll be a test driver in F1. But most of all I think she (Kosachenko) was talking about someone else. But yes, there is an opportunity, and perhaps we're even closer to this goal than the others," he added.
Bahrain International Circuit - Winter testing