Magnussen: I can’t believe I’m now a part of Renault
After his shoddy treatment by McLaren Kevin Magnussen makes a return to Formula 1 in a manner he could only have dreamed of by spearheading Renault’s return as a fully fledged works team to the pinnacle of the sport.
“It’s an incredible feeling and it means so much,” 22 year old Magnussen told media who gathered for the Renault announcement at a function near Paris. “It’s not only a Formula 1 drive but it’s a top drive.”
“Renault Sport will be fighting for World Championships in the future, it might have a build-up phase, but they’re here to win and that’s a goal I share. I can’t believe I’m now a part of it,” admitted the Dane.
Magnussen made a sensational debut when he finished second at the 2014 Australian Grand Prix for McLaren. But that year the team was on a downward slump which has yet to subside. For 2015 Magnussen was deemed surplus to requirements and was abruptly marginalised to make way for the return of Fernando Alonso to Woking.
He hung in as the team’s reserve but it was clear that he had become a victim of McLaren’s rapid downfall and the management’s decision making which made it clear he was not part of their future plans. Late last year Magnussen departed McLaren.
Magnussen said of his year on the sidelines, “It’s been character building! I had a season in 2014 and I felt it went quite well pitched against a past World Champion [Jenson Button].”
“To be replaced the following year was tough even if the line-up the team used was very strong. I had been racing every year since I was six so to sit to the side certainly wasn’t part of my plan.”
“Hopefully I’ll prove many points. I’m extremely motivated after a whole year away. I’ve been sitting on the sideline during the races for so many weekends and I’m hungry to come back and prove my worth. I’m extremely hungry and keen to get in a race car again and even more so with Renault Sport!”
“I have a lot to give. I’ve been connected to a top Formula 1 team for five years and three of those were in Formula 1 in driving and testing capacities. Despite just one season racing, I’ve got good experience. I can’t wait to get started at a great project such as a Renault factory team. I’m pleased to be a part of it.
“Not many drivers get a second chance in F1. I was looking at other things because there was a chance I would not be back in F1. Looking back at that compared where I’ve ended up is pretty cool. I have to thank Renault for giving me this opportunity,” he added.
Magnussen was offered the Renault drive after Pastor Maldonado was ousted in the aftermath of a fall out between Renault and Venezuelan state oil company PDVSA which had bank-rolled Maldonado’s career in F1.
The Dane will be joined by Jolyon Palmer in the Renault team for 2016.