Gutierrez could land regular 2016/17 FE drive

Gutierrez could land regular 2016/17 FE drive
By AutoSport

18/01/2017 at 18:37Updated

Ex-Haas Formula 1 driver Esteban Gutierrez could see out the majority of the Formula E season after he makes his debut in the series.

The Mexican announced his switch to the electric single-seater championship earlier this month but did not know which team he would drive for when he did so.

Gutierrez is set to make his debut at his home race in Mexico City on April 1 and has been tipped to compete in the New York and Montreal double-headers as well.

He could land a full-time drive for the remainder of the season or take advantage of clashing World Endurance Champion and DTM rounds.

Autosport understands Gutierrez is closing on a deal after narrowing his team choice down from a number of options, with series CEO Alejandro Agag revealing his team has been assisting Gutierrez's management.

"There are maybe some options where he gets a permanent drive," Agag told Autosport. "It's more likely he'll fill in in four or five races.

"It's a great addition to the championship. For Mexico, it's obviously great - the place is going to be absolutely crazy."

Gutierrez is pursuing a test/reserve driver role with a "top" F1 team.

For Formula E, he has been strongly linked to the Faraday Future Dragon Racing team in place of Audi DTM driver Loic Duval.

"We have a few possibilities," Gutierrez told Autosport last week.

"I've been in contact with various teams and we are evaluating the options, but obviously I want to be in the best possible car for the Mexican race, and also for the next few races.

"I wouldn't like to mention the options yet. There are clashes with some of the WEC events, so there may be a few seats available."

There are a number of clashes over the remainder of the FE season: Mexico City with the WEC's official pre-season test in Italy; the inaugural New York event with the Nurburgring WEC round and the Paris and Brussels FE races with the DTM's trips to the Lausitzring and Norisring respectively.

ARGENTINA NOT CURRENTLY AN OPTION

Gutierrez dismissed the possibility of contesting the next race in Buenos Aires to allow him to acclimatise to the car before his home event.

"At the moment I don't have plans to do the Argentina race," he added.

"My plan is to do the Mexican race and then possibly some other races as well, in order to try different things and start preparing properly for season four."

Gutierrez brought on Indycar race winner Adrian Fernandez as his manager towards the end of 2016.

Fernandez told Autosport a decision would be made soon and that the priority was "a good team and good situation".

"He's entering a championship that's already started," said Fernandez. "He'll have to learn a lot of things.

"It will require effort from everybody to bring him up to speed."

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