The Force India F1 Team will retain an identical driving line-up for the 2016 season after announcing it had re-signed Sergio Pérez as teammate to Nico Hülkenberg.

The Mexican driver joined the Silverstone-based team at the start of the 2014 season after an unimpressive single year campaigning with McLaren, which followed a strong two-year stint with the Sauber team.

While Hülkenberg’s multi-year contract renewal was confirmed at the beginning of the month, the identity of his teammate was only confirmed in the lead-up to this weekend’s Japanese Grand Prix after negotiations between Pérez and the team were delayed.

Pérez’s new contract runs for just a single season.

“I’m very happy Sergio has committed his future to Sahara Force India,” team principal Vijay Mallya said.

“He’s done a fantastic job for us already and when we give him a competitive car we know he can get the job done. He’s also got a great attitude and never gives up – it’s that fighting spirit which fits well with this team.

“You only have to look at his results in the last three races to see that he is performing at the top of his game.

“It’s an exciting time for Sergio, especially with the upcoming race in Mexico next month, and with our close connections to the country I’m sure it will be a highlight for everybody in the team.”

Pérez has performed strongly in his one-and-a-bit seasons with Force India. After finishing tenth overall in the Drivers’ Championship standings with one podium finish last year, he sits ninth in this year’s points ladder, nine points clear of his teammate.

“I am very happy to confirm that I will be staying with Sahara Force India,” Pérez added.

“Since coming here I’ve really grown as a driver and I feel I’m performing at my best. I’ve always said I want to establish myself in a team and it’s the right moment to announce my commitment for the future with Sahara Force India.

“I can feel the potential in the team and there is a good energy, which gives me confidence for next year. I think we can continue to deliver strong results and I will do my best to help drive the team forward.”

Image via Sahara Force India F1 Team

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.

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