Wednesday 22 January at 07:35 :
Jan.22 (GMM) Paul di Resta has admitted his aim is to combine his return to DTM this year with a role in formula one.
Having lost his Force India seat, Scot di Resta, 27, is returning to the German touring car series with Mercedes, for whom he won the 2010 title.
And although the media announcement made no mention of F1, authoritative reports suggested it is likely he will be called up as a test and reserve driver for the German carmaker's works Brackley based team.
"Everyone knows I didn't leave F1 because I didn't perform," he is quoted by The Scotsman newspaper. "There were other issues.
"If the opportunity comes up, I'm still young enough that I can get back in there. Racing in the DTM makes sense and it lets me combine something with F1 and keep my foot in the door should something come up," di Resta added.
Importantly, none of the ten races on the DTM calendar this year clash with F1's 19 grands prix, meaning di Resta would in theory be able to seamlessly combine the two roles.
"First, though, I need to concentrate on DTM," he insisted.
"Once we get this rolling the way we want, then we'll explore whatever other opportunities are on the table.
"Do I feel my F1 career is over? No, definitely not," di Resta continued.
"As is the case with any championship, I am now fully committed to winning the DTM title again with Mercedes.
"But they also know I want to remain in the F1 paddock. They are well aware of the fact that's where I want to be, and I know I have their full support. That's hugely important for me," he concluded.