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F1 Japanese GP: Perez officially confirms Force India deal for 2017

Sergio Perez ends speculation about his future by officially confirming he will stay with Force India for the 2017 F1 season.
RESULTS: Malaysian Grand Prix – Race results

Force India has officially confirmed it will field an unchanged driver line-up for the 2017 Formula 1 season after agreeing a deal extension with Sergio Perez.

The Mexican driver – a two-time podium winner in 2016 - had been linked with a potential move to Renault over the summer but has instead agreed new terms with Force India, one that will see him enter into a fourth consecutive season with the Vijay Mallya-helmed team.

POINTS: F1 World Championship Standings after the Malaysian GP

Currently eighth in the overall driver standings – with Force India on course for a best-ever fourth in the constructors' reckoning --, Perez says he was convinced to stay based on the rapid gains made by the privateer team during his time there and the potential brought on by next year's overhaul in regulations.

“I'm pleased to confirm that I will be racing with Sahara Force India in 2017 as the team and my supporters have concluded their agreements,” he said. “I'm very happy with this team and I have a good feeling for the future. I've seen the progress we've made over last couple of years and I'm sure we have the potential to achieve even more going forward.

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“The team knows me well and it's important to have stability, especially with some big rule changes planned for next year. I'm excited for the rest of this season and for the challenge that awaits all of us in 2017. I thank all the team for believing in me and I will do my best repay their faith with points, podiums and hopefully wins.

“I also want to thank our Mexican partners, especially Telmex and Telcel, who have been supporting me since I was a young boy. They continue to play an important role in my journey through the sport.”

Since making his F1 debut in 2011, Perez – a former Sauber and McLaren driver - has won seven podiums, with a best finish of second place in the 2012 Malaysian Grand Prix.

With Nico Hulkenberg also remaining on board in 2017, Force India will feature the same driver line-up for the fourth straight season.

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Related Pictures

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02.10.2016 - Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09
01.10.2016 - Qualifying, Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09
01.10.2016 - Free Practice 3, Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09
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29.09.2016 - Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM09
Kimi Raikkonen tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
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Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Pirelli 2017 tyre test [Credit: Pirelli]
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