File picture: Paulo Whitaker / Reuters.

London – Mercedes has posted a tongue-in-cheek job advertisement as it seeks a replacement for newly-retired Formula One world champion Nico Rosberg.

The notice, similar in format to the usual automotive vacancies, was published in Britain's Autosport magazine on Thursday under 'drive available' for the amusement of readers rather than any serious intent.

"As part of the travelling team, you will be responsible for the operation of an F1 car at track events including demos, tests and Grands Prix," it said.

"Ideally, you will have a proven track record in skills including steering, braking and in particular, accelerating. Possession of an FIA Super Licence will be an advantage."

The perks included subsidised restaurant facilities, life assurance, private medical cover, on-site gym and a company car lease scheme.

Other required skills, apart from being "self-motivated with a strong desire for success", included showing "extreme patience in the face of media attention" and being able to identify clearly the strengths and weaknesses of competitors.

Rosberg announced his retirement last Friday and dominant Mercedes has no need to advertise the hottest vacancy in Formula One, with anybody remotely qualified banging on its door.

The team's 22-year-old German reserve Pascal Wehrlein, who raced for Manor this year, is the bookmakers' favourite to partner triple world champion Lewis Hamilton in 2107. A spokesman sdaid: "While it would be a big step up for him, he seems to be the man the punters are predicting to replace the world champion."

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff told Sky Sports television he was ready to make a 'brave choice' - echoing the words he used about Rosberg when the German announced his decision.

"We need the quickest guy who makes the least mistakes and understands that this is a team game," said Wolff, who is involved with Finnish driver Valtteri Bottas' management team. "Besides the personal relationship, Valtteri is also very, very fast," said Wolff.

"But he's with Williams now, the lead driver, and is very important for the combination with Lance Stroll. Claire Williams and her team very much rely on him."

Mercedes has also expressed an interest in former double world champion Fernando Alonso but the Spaniard is under contract to McLaren, which does not want to let him go.

Reuters