Five more F1 practice drives for Palmer

Five more F1 practice drives for Palmer
By AutoSport

11/06/2015 at 21:12

The Lotus Formula 1 team will field Jolyon Palmer in first practice sessions at the next five grands prix as part of its ongoing commitment to the GP2 champion.

Palmer has already been behind the wheel of the E23 in practice one at three races to date in China, Bahrain and Spain, replacing Romain Grosjean on each occasion.

The 24-year-old will now further enhance his experience with Friday morning outings in the upcoming races in Austria, his home race in Britain, Hungary, Belgium and Italy.

Palmer will also drive on the first day of the second in-season test at the Red Bull Ring that follows the grand prix on June 23.

"I'm really pleased to be driving in FP1 for the rest of the European season," said Palmer.

"I've been happy with my performances so far and the car is improving all the time so, after watching on at the last two events, it will be great to be driving again."

It is understood Palmer is to take part in 10 practice one sessions overall this season, leaving a further two to come once the flyaway end to the calendar commences with a trip to Singapore in mid-September.

Grosjean has already made clear his displeasure at being displaced from his seat for so many first practice runs, claiming it affects his preparation ahead of the race weekend.

However, both he and team-mate Pastor Maldonado have contracts with Lotus through to the end of 2016, with Palmer told by CEO Matthew Carter he will have to be patient if wants a permanent drive from '17 onwards.