Sauber confirms Charles Leclerc and Marcus Ericsson as 2018 race line-up

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Formula Two champion Charles Leclerc will graduate to F1 with Sauber next season.

He'll have a new partner for the season, with Formula 2 champion Charles Leclerc stepping up to make his F1 race début in Melbourne.

But there had been doubts about Ericsson's roles, despite the fact that his personal sponsors are also involved in Longbow Finance, the group that bought out Sauber in 2016.

Leclerc is a current member of the Ferrari Driver Academy, and he is widely considered one of the future stars of Formula One.

The 2017 season has barely been over a week and Sauber are already motoring ahead with their plans for next year, hosting a livery launch in Milan that announced their driver lineup for 2018 as well as showed off a significantly revised colour scheme.

The 38-year-old Raikkonen signed a third straight one-year deal to remain with Ferrari through 2018, but a return in 2019 on a fourth consecutive one-year deal isn't overwhelmingly likely. The Italian auto manufacturer is making a return to the sport after 30-years to sponsor the team.

The news leaves Pascal Wehrlein's hopes of securing another F1 drive with Williams, though Robert Kubica remains favourite to be Lance Stroll's teammate, which is the only remaining slot on the grid for next season.

Instead, the team will use Ferrari power elements badged with the iconic Alfa Romeo brand.