Sainz To End Season at Renault as Palmer Leaves
Just when it looked like things were starting to make sense for the rotation of drivers, Formula 1 decided to take another spin of the silly season roulette wheel.
Jolyon Palmer used Instagram to tell his fans that he will be leaving Renault after this weekend’s Japanese Grand Prix. His team quickly mentioned his image in a tweet to confirm the news and announced 2018 signing Carlos Sainz for the final four races of 2017.
As a result, Daniil Kvyat returns to Toro Rosso for the United States Grand Prix after missing Malaysia and Japan alongside Pierre Gasly. The news is set to mean Gasly loses out on the opportunity to become Super Formula champion, with the season finale at Suzuka clashing with Austin’s contest.
Palmer has entered 37 races for the French manufacturer, achieving a high of sixth at this year’s Singapore Grand Prix. He has been out-qualified 15-0 by Nico Hulkenberg during the campaign and to date has provided eight of the team’s 42 points towards the constructors’ championship.
“The Japanese Grand Prix will be my last race for Renault,” he said. “It’s been an extremely challenging season and I’ve been through a lot in the last three years [starting his career with them as reserve driver in 2015], but it’s been a tremendous journey overall with the team. I can look back proudly at my performance in the second half of last season, my first point in Malaysia [in 2016] and of course reaching a career-high of sixth place at Singapore this year. I wish the team all the best for the future. My immediate focus is now on achieving the best possible result in the Japanese GP, and then I can access my options for the future.”
Sainz entered 56 events for Toro Rosso, scoring 26 top-10s up to Malaysia and a career-high result of fourth in Singapore in 2017.
“I really want to thank all my engineers and mechanics for their support and tremendous work throughout these [three] years,” Sainz said. “Toro Rosso is made up of a fantastic group of people and I wish them only the best for the future. On my side, I will definitely do my best in tomorrow’s race – this would be the best possible send-off. Additionally, competing in these last four races with Renault gives me a good opportunity to get to know the team and car earlier than expected.”
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