Latifi handed FP1 outing with Force India

Force India reserve driver Nicholas Latifi will get the opportunity to run in front of his home crowd at this year’s Canadian Grand Prix.

The 22-year-old from Toronto, who enjoyed a testing role with Renault in 2017, will drive in Friday’s first practice session in Montreal, but he’ll likely also run in a few additional FP1 sessions over the course of the 2018 season.

“I’ve never raced or even driven at the track so this will be my first opportunity to experience an amazing circuit,” he said.

“I’m super excited about driving the car in front of the Canadian fans and I’m sure it will be a highlight of the season.

“I will try and enjoy the moment, but I’m well aware that the priority is simply to work through the practice programme and give the team all the information they need.”

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Latifi’s very first run with the Silverstone-based outfit will take place in Barcelona, at Formula 1’s first pre-season test which kicks off on February 26.

“I’m really excited to be getting in the car so soon,” said the Canadian.

“I will be driving the last day of the first week, which is ideal because it will give me a few more days to observe how the team works and hear the feedback of Esteban [Ocon] and Sergio [Perez].

“I know that track time is critical early in the season so my goal is to make sure I give the team the best possible feedback and help with the car development.”

In addition to his on-track duties, Latifi will also embark on a driving programme in Force India’s simulator – a valuable asset that is key to developing an F1 car outside of permitted on-track test sessions.

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