DAMS sign Rowland and Latifi for 2017 title charge

by Paul Hensby

Oliver Rowland will remain in the GP2 Series for a second season and joins race and championship winning outfit DAMS, where he will be joined by Nicholas Latifi.

Racing Steps Foundation-backed and Renault Sport Academy ace Rowland switches across from MP Motorsport where he took four podium finishes in 2016, and is looking forward to advancing forward to race wins and a championship challenge with the French outfit.

“The overall aim is to go and dominate the championship, that’s my personal target and is shared by the team,” said Rowland. “DAMS have won championships in previous years with [Davide] Valsecchi, [Romain] Grosjean and [Jolyon] Palmer, so I’m coming to an outfit with a lot of pedigree and I’ll have to make sure I’m at the top of my game.

“Last year was my first year and with the tyres it was sometimes difficult, but there were lots of positives and I had some good results. Going into this year, I’ve got a lot better with my approach going into each race, so I’m looking forward to putting it into place. Everyone has been great so far and I’m excited to working with Nicholas to push the team forward.”

Latifi remains with DAMS for a second season, and started 2016 with a podium finish at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya but struggled for consistency thereafter, taking only three more points finishes on his way to sixteenth in the championship, and is looking to be consistently at the front in 2017.

“Our big goal is to be consistently running at the front and having a better result in the championship than we did last year,” said Latifi. “I’m really happy to be in this team for the second season in a row, because I already have an established working relationship with everybody.

“That will help me a lot, especially as you don’t get a lot of track time in GP2 and you’re always having to adapt to the conditions. I know where we have to improve and the team knows where I have to as well. I’ve already made my first visit to the workshop this year and everyone is extremely motivated. There’s definitely a really positive feeling in the team about the upcoming season.”

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