Jolyon Palmer has announced that tomorrow's Japanese Grand Prix will be his last Formula 1 appearance with Renault, leaving the team with four races remaining this season.

Palmer made his F1 debut with Renault at the start of 2016, scoring one point through his debut season, and was confirmed to be departing Enstone at the end of the year after the team announced the signing of Carlos Sainz Jr. for 2018.

Paddock speculation suggested Palmer had been offered a pay-off by Renault to leave early and make room for Sainz, but was digging in his heels on his contract to see out the season.

In a post on his Instagram account on Saturday after qualifying for the Japanese Grand Prix, Palmer announced he would be leaving the team after the Suzuka weekend.

"Tomorrow's Japanese GP will be my last race for Renault," Palmer wrote. "With my grid penalty I'll be starting near the back but I will be giving it my all as always. Thanks everyone for the support during the last two years, it means a lot!"

Given Renault's push to get Sainz into Palmer's seat early, the Spaniard is widely expected to make an early move up for the next race in Austin, potentially freeing up a place for Daniil Kvyat to return to Toro Rosso.

An official confirmation was given by Renault after Palmer’s announcement via social media and Palmer says he wishes the team ‘all the best for the future’ and is concentrating on his future.

“The Japanese Grand Prix will be my last race for Renault,” Palmer said. “It’s been an extremely challenging season and I’ve been through a lot in the last three years, but it’s been a tremendous journey overall with the team.

“I can look back proudly at the performance in the second half of last season, my first point in Malaysia and of course reaching a career high of sixth place in 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 assess my options for the future.”

Cyril Abiteboul, Renault F1 boss, has added: “I would like to thank Jolyon for his commitment to the team and his professionalism. Since Renault’s return to Formula 1, Jolyon has been highly dedicated in an evolving environment. He has shown great personal qualities and we wish him all the best in his future career.”



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