Formula 2 title hopeful Callum Ilott is not currently being considered for a Formula 1 seat at Haas next year, according to team boss Gunther Steiner.
Ilott will make his F1 debut for Haas during FP1 at the Nurburgring this weekend, deputising for Romain Grosjean in Friday morning’s session.
The Ferrari academy driver recently tested a 2018 F1 car at Fiorano, and is being linked with a graduation from F2 next season.
Steiner, who revealed up to 10 drivers have been shortlisted for a 2021 drive, admitted Ilott was not amongst the list under consideration.
“He’s not on the list because he’s a Ferrari driver. He’s their driver, so therefore he’s not on the list,” Steiner said, as quoted by Motorsport.com.
“I don’t know what they’re doing with him, what they’re planning with him and so on. Therefore at the moment he’s not on the list.
“I have a lot of respect for him because he’s second in the F2 championship which means he’s pretty good. I met him the first time this morning briefly, we’ll have a meeting this afternoon, so I will learn a little bit more about him.
“I’m very honest, he’s not on the list now. Maybe he’s on the list tomorrow, I don’t know that. It will not be depending on the FP1 result.
“For sure if he does one thing which he shouldn’t be doing, then he’s not on the list for sure anymore, like if he crashes the car.”
Ilott sits second in the F2 standings with four races remaining, one place behind fellow Ferrari academy driver Mick Schumacher, who will also feature in first practice for Alfa Romeo.
Haas is still contemplating the look of its driver line-up for next year, with current drivers Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen in the frame along with free agents Sergio Perez and Nico Hulkenberg.
Steiner said the decision is a slow process and refused to put a timeframe on when an announcement will be made.
“My comment today on drivers is we’re getting there,” Steiner said. “We are getting there slowly. It’s not an easy task to do this, but I would say we are getting there.
“I don’t want to go into any detail of how many are there [on the shortlist]. This is not without disrespect to anything, it’s just right, then we are sitting here just speaking about something we have been covering the last two months now.
“We are getting there, and as soon as we know, we will announce is, and hopefully it’s not too far out for your benefit and for my one as well, so you’re not busting my you-know-what.”