Force India confident in retaining Perez for 2017

Force India’s Bob Fernley believes Sergio Perez will remain with Vijay Mallya’s outfit next season despite rumors of the Mexican being courted by Ferrari.

Perez has been on somewhat of a roll lately, achieving two podium finishes in the last three races, in Monaco and Baku. So the attention bestowed upon the 26-year-old and the speculation regarding his future is fairly predictable.

Media speculation, focused on the uncertainty surrounding Kimi Raikkonen’s future at Ferrari, is guessing that Perez could be the man to replace the Finn should ‘Iceman’ decide to call it a day in Grand Prix racing.

But Force India’s deputy team principal Fernley is unaware of any formal contact between the Scuderia and ‘Checo’ Perez.

“I am very, very confident we will have Checo [Perez] next year, but you can never say never in F1,” Fernley told Motorsport.com.

“Things can happen, especially when you are dealing with the might of Ferrari.”

“If there is interest, and we don’t know of any, and there has been no approach or anything like that – so it is more media speculation than coming from the team – then you have to give full credit to Checo for getting people’s attention.

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“We’ve only got four teams ahead of us, and the choice is very minimal.”

Fernley concluded by saying that he was hopeful that Force India’s driver lineup would be finalised as soon as possible.

“I think we will always work to do it in a timely manner, but it has to be something that everybody signs up to.”

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