F1: Magnussen awaits Renault news, Maldonado speculation builds

BY Adam Cooper • January 13, 2016

Kevin Magnussen's name continues to be linked to Renault amid suggestions that team representatives have travelled to Venezuela to discuss late sponsorship payments with PDVSA.

If PDVSA is in breach, it could mean that Pastor Maldonado's seat is at risk. Magnussen is believed to have some backing from Denmark, and he has long been associated with the Bestseller clothing company and its brand Jack & Jones.

Magnussen had discussions with Lotus F1 team management last year, but they ended when Jolyon Palmer was formally confirmed for the 2016 season in October of last year. It was not clear how much of a chance Magnussen really had, as it's been suggested that the Englishman was going to get the race seat as part of an ongoing two-year deal.

Sources indicated Renault was not entirely happy with the prospect of a Maldonado/Palmer line-up for its first year as a works team, but was constricted to the fact that contracts had been signed by the Lotus F1 management, with useful sponsorship coming through.

However, discussions with the Dane have restarted, and Magnussen is known to have visited Enstone last week.

Even if there is no change to the 2016 race line-up, a reserve driver role with the prospect of an upgrade in 2017 would be a good solution for the former McLaren driver, despite his reluctance to spend another year without a racing program.

Magnussen could possibly dovetail a Renault reserve role with a Mercedes DTM seat. Meanwhile, he is also still very much in the hunt for a Manor race seat.

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