Russell gets FP1 outings with Force India
7 November 2017 – Mercedes-backed GP3 Series champion George Russell will conduct Formula 1 practice runs with Force India at the Brazilian and Abu Dhabi Grands Prix.
British racer Russell, 19, secured the GP3 title with a round to spare, having racked up four victories and two further podium finishes so far this season.
He will make his F1 practice debut at Interlagos in place of Sergio Pérez, before taking over Esteban Ocon's car for the opening session at the Yas Marina Circuit.
"I'm extremely excited to be driving in free practice for Force India in Brazil and Abu Dhabi," said Russell.
"2017 has already been a year full of great opportunities and to top off the season with these two outings feels fantastic.
"I've never driven the VJM10 before or driven at Interlagos, but I'm really looking forward to the challenge.
"I would like to say a big 'thank you' to Force India for this opportunity and also thank Mercedes for their continued support."
Force India boss Vijay Mallya added: "We are happy to give George this opportunity; he's an up-and-coming talent and we've followed his success in GP3 closely.
"George has already been in our simulator several times and has worked well with the team.
"Now that we have secured fourth place in the championship, it's the ideal time to look to the future and handing George his free practice debut will allow us to evaluate his potential."
Ocon and Sauber's Pascal Wehrlein are also backed by Mercedes.