Renault and Force India confirm drivers for 2017
With the news of Nico Hülkenberg leaving Force India to join Renault earlier this season, this left the fates of Renault’s current drivers under question. Amazingly, Jolyon Palmer has been able to secure a contract for next season. His debut season has been going less than smashingly (having scored only once to team-mate Magnussen’s 2 point-scoring finishes) but I suppose this is good news for his career.
Amazingly, this leaves Kevin Magnussen’s future in the sport uncertain. It’s been speculated that Magnussen could replace Esteban Gutierrez at Haas F1 as the Mexican driver has failed to score points this whole past season. As of this writing, this is indeed still a rumour. Magnussen made a return to active driving duty this season with Renault, having driven the 2014 season with McLaren before he was replaced by Fernando Alonso.
In another really surprising move, Force India who confirmed that Esteban Ocon of Manor will drive for the team next season, as Sergio Perez’s team-mate. The announcement is a little surprising as Ocon has only been in active driving duty since the Belgian Grand Prix. Furthermore, his team-mate Pascal Wehrlein has actually scored a championship point for the team yet his future remains uncertain. Manor has noted that they’d like to hold on to the driver, though in earnest, I doubt Wehrlein will be too happy to stay with the bottom-feeder team.