Adrian Sutil could be set for a return to F1 after being linked with Force India for the 2013 season.
The German drove with the team through its various guises from 2007 through to the end of 2011, when he was replaced by test driver Nico Hulkenberg.
An assault conviction over an incident involving Genii Capital's Eric Lux in a Shanghai nightclub played a part in Sutil failing to find a role in F1 for the current season, although he was an interested paddock visitor on more than one occasion during 2012 amidst continued talk he was eager to secure a return.
With Hulkenberg having elected to move to Sauber next year, Force India now has a vacancy for the 2013 campaign, with the likes of Jules Bianchi, Bruno Senna and Kamui Kobayashi all being mentioned as possible partners for Paul di Resta – who is set to continue for another season.
However, the team could instead elect to go back to the driver line-up it fielded last year according to reports, with the Indo-Asian News Service
reporting that Sutil had emerged as the favourite to fill the second seat.
“[Paul] was always expected to carry on,” a team source was quoted as saying. “He has delivered so far and it makes sense to retain him.
"The announcement should take place next week. Adrian looks the best bet to partner di Resta as he has got the required experience in Formula One. At the same time, Mr. Mallya also considered all other available options."