Kevin Magnussen has given Renault two more weeks to make a decision on his position within the team. The Danish driver has been kept in the dark along with team mate Jolyon Palmer surrounding their future with the team, despite the pair’s improved results in the highly under-developed RS16.
Magnussen had expected Renault to exercise the option to retain his drive for 2017 before the Singapore GP. But with their main target Sergio Perez confirming a new deal with Force India, the Dane is more in the frame for the drive along with Palmer, Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz and Renault junior and Manor race driver Esteban Ocon. The Dane, however, said he will remain committed to Renault’s camp despite being technically free to look for a driver elsewhere.
“I think it shows very clearly that I want to continue here. That’s what I wanted to signal and say that I am willing to wait and I understand the situation that is going on. It’s very clear that I believe that this team will go very far and I hope I can continue here for a long time.” Magnussen said on Thursday.
“We’ve had good dialogue, positive conversations and I know what the situation is, more or less. So I’ve given them more time to get things sorted.”
Magnussen acknowledged that the delay could be influenced by commercial aspects as the team look to expand their Enstone base.
“I think as ever Formula One is a commercial sport and it’s not a secret that my commercial value is a bit lower than perhaps other drivers.”
“I have very good partnerships and sponsors and I’m very grateful for their support but some of the other drivers have an unbelievable amount of support”
“Hopefully I will be judged and the decision will be taken on talent and not on money.”
Renault have scored points in both last races and their on-track performance has been on an upward slope despite the team halting development on the 2016 challenger. Magnussen thinks that is down to the team improving its racecraft and proves Renault is a good place to be for next year.
“Everyone is excited because you can see we are improving on a car that isn’t really developing and getting more out of it.”
“We’re learning more, getting procedures right, pit stops are getting faster, strategies are starting to be really good.”
“There’s a lot of stuff in place that once we get a fast car I feel comfortable that we should be able to extract everything out of it.”
“I hope I can be with this team for many years.” he added.
Image via Renault Sport F1