PALMER SECURES RENAULT DEAL
The F1 driver market for 2017 closed up significantly before the Brazilian GP with a host of announcements as Force India, Haas and Renault finalised their line-ups.
Briton Jolyon Palmer will remain with Renault for its second season back as a full works outfit. Palmer will race alongside Renault’s new signing Nico Hulkenberg.
“I can’t wait to reward the team’s faith in me,” said Palmer. “Having worked at Enstone since 2015 I can fully appreciate the development of the infrastructure this year.”
Palmer’s current team-mate Kevin Magnussen will switch to Haas to link up with Romain Grosjean after saying that Renault’s offer of a new contract wasn’t good enough.
“I’ve been talking to many teams and some seem very focused on the short term, but I’m thinking more long term so Haas gave me a better offer,” said the Dane.
Force India also signed F1 rookie Esteban Ocon to partner Sergio Perez for 2017. The Frenchman has joined on a ‘multi-year deal’ to replace Renault-bound Hulkenberg.
“Esteban is an exceptional talent and we’ve had our eyes on him for a number of years through the junior categories,” said team head Vijay Mallya. “He is more than capable alongside Sergio.”
Ocon is also a Mercedes junior driver, which fits with the team’s engine supply deal.
The moves mean that only Manor has open seats for 2017.
Brit will drive Renault in ’17
Palmer will stay put