F1: Palmer OUT, Sainz IN At Renault

Sainz crash and heavy rain delay practice sessions in Japan

"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", Palmer said.

Jolyon Palmer has confirmed via social media on Saturday that this weekend's race at the Suzuka Circuit will be his last with the Renault factory team.

It follows the announcement that Jolyon Palmer will leave the Renault team after Sunday's Japanese Grand Prix, with Sainz being drafted in to partner Nico Hulkenberg for the remainder of the season.

Sainz has five races left with Toro Rosso this year before making a loan switch to Renault for 2018.

Frenchman Pierre Gasly steps up to a full-time drive for the rest of the season with Toro Rosso.

"How disappointing, this wasn't the way I wanted to end my time with Toro Rosso, that's for sure", said Sainz Jr.

"Since Renault's return to Formula 1, Jolyon has been highly dedicated in an evolving environment". "It's a shame to not finish the season but I respect the decision and I wish the team and Carlos [Sainz] all the best. We look forward to beating him on track!"

"I've been with them for three years and it's a shame not to be going to Austin with them".

All of those were scored in one race, in Singapore where he was sixth out of just 12 finishers, leaving 15 other complete blanks. "I think this chance gives me the opportunity to get to know everyone inside the team, start working with my engineers, try to adapt the auto to myself and myself to the vehicle".

"On my side, I will definitely do my very best in tomorrow's race".

Gasly and Kvyat are now likely to form Toro Rosso's 2018 driver line-up, although Pascal Wehrlein is considered an outside contender.

The Englishman is set to start 18th at Suzuka, one place ahead of Sainz, after both received a 20-place grid penalty for engine component changes.

Meanwhile, Sainz's early Toro Rosso exit means Gasly, who made his F1 debut in Malaysia last week, will miss out on the chance to win the Japanese Super Formula series later this month.

Related news: