In a recent report, it has been revealed that the Renault F1 Team are looking to sign Force India driver Sergio Perez for their 2017 campaign.
Sergio Perez To Renault For 2017?
Despite Force India team principal Vijay Mallya confirming both Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez to be driving for the team in 2017 at the British Grand Prix, Perez has been linked to a Renault drive for next year. In a recent article by Autosport magazine, Perez’s sponsors are supposedly holding discussions with Renault, viewing a Renault drive as the next step in the young Mexican’s career- a step to him becoming a future world champion.
At Force India, Perez apparently feels that he has achieved all that he can achieve and that a move to a works team would provide him with new opportunities, potentially offering the Mexican a possible title challenge.
Sergio Perez made his Formula 1 debut in 2011 driving for the Sauber F1 Team. Following a fairly impressive first season, Perez remained at the Swiss team for 2012, securing his first Formula 1 podium with a second place finish at the Malaysian Grand Prix. Perez secured further podium finishes at the Canadian, and Italian Grand Prix. Through this, Perez then moved to McLaren to partner Jenson Button and replace Lewis Hamilton for 2013. Perez then moved to Force India in 2014, remaining at the team until present day, finishing on the podium four times in 48 race starts for the team ahead of this weekend’s German Grand Prix.
The Renault F1 Team made their return in to Formula 1 in 2016 after buying out a financially struggling Lotus F1 Team at the end of 2015. So far in 2016, Renault have had a poor season, finishing in the top 10 only once in 11 races, with Kevin Magnussen securing 6 points for the team at the Russian Grand Prix. Jolyon Palmer’s highest finishing position remains as eleventh place from the season opening Australian Grand Prix, despite the Brit narrowing missing out on points at the Hungarian Grand Prix. Renault are viewing 2016 as a ‘development year’, working on their 2017 engine and car.
If Sergio Perez was to go to Renault, Formula 1’s driver market would be mixed up, with many questions arising such as who would partner Perez in 2017 and who would replace Perez at Force India. Candidates for a Renault drive next year include Magnuseen, Palmer, and France’s Esteban Ocon. It is likely that Ocon would be favoured over Magnussen and Palmer for a Renault drive in 2017, having nationality and performance on his side. With regards to the possible seat available at Force India the likely candidate could be Alfonso Celis Jr. However, Britain’s Jolyon Palmer did act as Force India’s test driver back in 2014- Palmer’s GP2 championship year, possibly leaving the Brit in a position to move teams for 2017.
With regards to a move to Renault for Sergio Perez, only time will tell. If Perez does go to Renault, who would he partner? And who would he be replaced by at Force India? Only time will tell.