Petrov inks two-year deal with Renault

Moscow: Vitaly Petrov, Russia`s first Formula One driver, has extended his contract with the Renault team for the next two years.

"I`m very excited about working with this great team once more, and I`m confident that I will deliver," the 26-year-old driver told a news conference in Moscow on Wednesday.

"In many ways, 2010 was about learning. 2011 will be about performing. Today, I feel I am ready to rise to this challenge."

The Renault Formula One team will race as Lotus Renault GP next year under a long-term partnership with the Malaysian-owned sportscar company, who will also become co-owners.

"I`m very happy to continue with the team and proud to be representing Lotus Renault GP for the 2011 and 2012 seasons," said Petrov, who will partner Poland`s Robert Kubica next year.

"I learned a lot about the sport, the circuits and the car this year. That will help me improve even more in the future."

Petrov`s position with Renault has been uncertain after an inconsistent first season in Formula One.

He scored just 27 points to Kubica`s 136 this year but stood out in the season-ending Abu Dhabi race when he finished sixth having kept Ferrari`s Fernando Alonso, who had been leading the championship before the race, behind him for 40 laps.

"We`re delighted to have Vitaly on board for another two years," team owner Gerard Lopez said in a statement.

"Last season, he showed on several occasions that he clearly has the potential to deliver. It was just a matter of putting everything together during the same weekend, race after race, and this will be his target for 2011."

Eric Boullier, Lotus Renault GP team principal, added: "We are very pleased to confirm that Vitaly will be staying with us for 2011 and 2012, in order that both he and the team can build on a promising 2010 campaign."

"The entire team has been working flat out over the past months to improve our competitiveness, and a stable driver line-up is essential to achieving our targets."

Bureau Report

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