Renault has added Chinese karting driver Sun Yue Yang to its junior roster – the Renault Sport Academy –, the French manufacturer has announced ahead of this weekend’s F1 race in Shanghai.
The 15-year-old thus becomes the latest addition to Renault’s revived young driver scheme, which already includes Oliver Rowland, Jack Aitken, Louis Delétraz, and Kevin Jörg.
Unlike his new stablemates, Sun enters the RSA straight out karting. His 2015 credentials comprise a fifth-place finish in the WSK Champions Cup, 13th in the CIK-FIA European Championship and 14th in the CIK-FIA World Championship.
“We are pleased and proud to give Renault China the opportunity through the Academy to bring Sun through the ranks,” Renault racing director Frederic Vasseur is quoted as saying by Motorsport.com.
“Sun has shown strong potential in WSK to, with the right preparation, work his way to Formula One. The opportunities for both Sun and Renault China to benefit from this partnership are huge.”
Renault CEO Carlos Ghosn has made little secret that the company’s F1 return should serve to boost brand awareness around the world, especially in markets like China, India, or Brazil. Sun will now embark on a development programme that will aim to bring him all the way to pinnacle of motor racing “within ten years”.
Having been hosting an F1 race since 2004, China has yet to see a Chinese driver compete in the sport, though WTCC race winner Ma Qing Hua took part in several FP1 sessions with the now-defunct HRT and Caterham teams in 2012-13.
On we go with our day in Shanghai, tonight we welcome Sun Yue Yang to the Renault Sport Academy! #RenaultFamily pic.twitter.com/fVmDl1cH5E
— Renault Sport F1 (@RenaultSportF1) 13 avril 2016
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