Kevin Magnussen has admitted for the first time that he is looking beyond Renault to secure his future in formula one.
But the Dane does welcome news that the French works team has now stopped developing the 2016 car in order to focus completely on the new regulations.
“Yes, because we can’t win with this car,” Magnussen said in Hungary when asked if he supports the decision.
“I am hoping I will stay with the team, so I want us to focus on the future,” he added.
Renault appears happy with Magnussen so far, but the 23-year-old is on only a one-year contract and the team is not yet ready to take up its 2017 option.
“I expect to be here,” he said when asked by the Danish newspaper BT about 2017.
“I have told that team that I want to continue and I have not seen or heard anything that indicates I won’t be here. But I also sense that the team is in no hurry to decide its drivers for next year,” Magnussen admitted.
So when asked what steps he is taking to ensure he keeps racing in 2017, he answered: “I’m not only talking with Renault.
“I know enough people in the paddock now to hear about what’s going on, but right now I don’t feel the need to talk too much with the other teams about 2017,” he added.
It seems the biggest threat to his place is coming from team reserve Esteban Ocon, who is driving the yellow car in Friday practice this weekend.
“Esteban is a really good driver, there’s no doubt,” Magnussen told Ekstra Bladet newspaper. “It wouldn’t be good for motor sport in general if a driver like him didn’t get a chance in formula one.”