Dennis: Magnussen deserves F1 career

McLaren chairman Ron Dennis has praised outgoing reserve driver Kevin Magnussen in the wake of the Dane's official split with the Formula 1 squad.

Magnussen contested the 2014 F1 season for McLaren and stood on the podium on his debut race in Melbourne, but was demoted to a reserve driver role for this season as Fernando Alonso joined the team alongside Jenson Button.

With both McLaren's drivers set to stay put for 2016, the Woking-based team has now decided not to exercise the option to retain Magnussen beyond this year.

"Kevin has always done a very impressive and professional job for McLaren in the five years since he joined our Young Driver Programme in 2010," said Dennis in a statement.

"In 2014 he raced very well alongside Jenson [Button], who is a hugely experienced and very quick World Champion. Kevin's Grand Prix debut in Melbourne last year was rewarded with a podium that day that he, and we, can be justifiably proud of.

"Kevin has continued to work hard for us in 2015, supporting Fernando and Jenson, although he was understandably frustrated not to be racing.

"He is extremely keen to return to racing next year, and, in keeping with our tradition with our young drivers, we will not stand in the way of his ability to fulfil his ambition and potential."

While it is not clear whether the Dane can find an F1 seat for 2016 outside of McLaren, the Dane has confirmed he will not accept another year on the sidelines - and could choose an opportunity beyond F1.

However, Dennis stated that he would prefer to see the Dane remain within the championship.

"He is a very talented racing driver, and he deserves to have a Formula 1 career, as Jenson has publicly said," he added.

"Evidently, we have no space for him at McLaren - Honda as a race driver next year, but there is no shame in being edged out by two World Champions, Fernando [Alonso] and Jenson.

"We wish Kevin well, and will do all we can to help him successfully embark on the next chapter of his racing career."

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Kevin Magnussen
Teams McLaren
Article type Breaking news