Nathaniel Powers has now been publicly acknowledged as a big signing for Downton. There were rumours that things weren't going completely well in terms of negotiations between Franklin and Powers, however, waiting on the wings, ready to pounce was Enrique Ruiz.
The current test driver for Franklin F1 was looking to keep his seat at the Championship leading team, and he got his wish. This morning, Franklin-Honda announced that the Brazilian driver would not only be retained by the team, but would also be replacing his British team mate.
"I'm so happy to know that I'll be racing next season. After watching both drivers each race, I wasn't sure that I'd get my chance, given that both have performed exceptionally. I started to look into other teams, to try and get a race seat, but luckily for me, a spot opened up here and I grabbed the opportunity with both hands. This is a fantastic team, for sure, and I can't wait to get myself in the seat!"
During the press conference, Jamie Franklin was eager to make it known that just because Powers was destined for pastures new, the focus on his Championship effort would not be hindered in any way.
"We will give Nathan 100% for the rest of the season, because we need the points to secure the Constructor's title. We aren't really too focused on the Driver's at the moment, because it could be anyone who gets it. I'm not going to lie and say that it wouldn't be nice to keep the number one for ourselves next season, but we won't risk losing points just to do this. However, having said that, if we get the chance to run Ruiz at some point this year, then that's what we'll do. The more experience he gets this season, the better prepared he will be for the future. There is only so much a simulator can teach you,"
Just as the conference came to a close, Jamie Franklin mentioned that there would be more news from the team soon, adding that it be of huge benefit to the team. There are rumours saying that the expenditure for these projects were why the team were unable to justify the amount of money Powers was requiring.