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Nick Heidfeld and Lotus Renault GP have officially split ahead of this season’s final seven races, with both parties agreeing an ‘amicable settlement’ on Friday afternoon. The German was due to take legal action after Bruno Senna replaced him in Belgium last weekend, but has now decided to move on and focus on his future.
"Obviously I’m disappointed to be leaving Lotus Renault GP in the middle of the season," Heidfeld explained. "I thought I could still make a big contribution to the team, but I have to see things as they are and I want to turn my attention to the future.
"We have taken the right decision by choosing to end our collaboration today. I would like to wish all the friends I made at Enstone a successful end to the season. One thing is for sure - I’ll be back racing at the highest level soon."
Renault Team Principal Eric Boullier added that he is extremely grateful for Heidfeld's services in 2011, describing his contribution as ‘highly valuable’.
"Our disagreement with Nick has been the subject of much media coverage lately, and we are pleased to have reached a swift and reasonable solution," he said. "Our separation process was already a painful one, and neither of us wanted to go through another legal hearing.
"We’re very grateful to Nick for the highly valuable contribution he’s made to the team. We certainly had good times together, in particular remembering our podium finish in Malaysia. He is a very strong and determined racer and we wish him every success in the future."
Heidfeld signed with Renault in February to replace the injured Robert Kubica, joining Vitaly Petrov who is contesting his second Formula 1 campaign. However, despite a podium finish at Sepang, the 34-year-old failed to cement his place in the squad. The decision means that Senna will now finish the 2011 season with the Enstone team.
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